As Nicola Sturgeon orders action to try to curb the spread of the Covid-19 mutant strain, SCOTLAND has again been sent into a full national lockdown.
Nicola Sturgeon announced that the current lockout, in which most of the public will be asked to remain home, will take effect from midnight tonight, following a Holyrood emergency meeting and a cabinet meeting.
Coronavirus Scotland: schools until February to remain closed
By statute, residents of mainland Scotland are only permitted to leave their homes for sports, food shopping and medical supplies in January, and to go to work for vital workers.
She said, “In summary, I can now confirm that we have decided to introduce a legal requirement to stay at home from tomorrow for the duration of January, except for essential purposes.”
“This is similar to the lockdown in March last year.”
Ms. Sturgeon said schools would not reopen until Feb. 1 in mainland Scotland and the islands “for the majority of pupils” The measure will be reviewed in mid-January.
She said the decision was appropriate because “the overall level of community transfer is simply too high.”
There will still be only two individuals from two separate households permitted to meet outside.
Worship houses must be closed for community services beginning on Friday. A limit of five persons will be permitted to attend weddings and civil unions, and 20 for funerals.
Ms. Sturgeon advised MPs that the hospital capacity of Covid 19 could overflow within “three or four weeks.” if nothing is done.
She said, “We have the opportunity in Scotland to avert such a deterioration in the situation, but we need to act quickly.”
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The First Minister said the decision to go to lockdown was made on Monday morning after a meeting of the Scottish Cabinet.
The measure follows a sharp increase in the number of daily cases in Scotland in recent days – with around half of the new infections caused by the easier-to-spread coronavirus strain, which is assumed to be up to 70% transmissible.
The argument of Nicola Sturgeon in its entirety, though Scots must stay home
The First Minister announced that in the last 24 hours, 1,905 new cases of the virus have been identified.
The rate of positive tests now stands at 15%, with the World Health Organization warning of levels above five%.
On Sunday, 2,464 new cases were confirmed in the last 24 hours, an improvement from Saturday’s 2,137 cases. A total of 2,539 new cases were confirmed on New Year’s Day and 2,622 on Hogmanay.