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First minister make face coverings mandatory in communal workplace areas


By Alan Hendry

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The wearing of face coverings has today become mandatory in staff canteens, and the same rule will apply from the start of next week in other communal workplace areas such as corridors and social spaces.

The measures were announced by Nicola Sturgeon on Thursday. In a statement to the Scottish Parliament, the First Minister also said the business support scheme will start taking online applications from Tuesday (October 20). In total, £40 million of support is available, including a £20 million grant fund which will be administered by local authorities.

Changes to face-covering regulations are:

  • The wearing of face coverings in a workplace canteen, when not seated at a table, such as when queueing, entering or leaving the canteen (in line with other hospitality venues) – from Friday, October 16
  • The wearing of face coverings in other indoor communal workplaces, such as corridors and social spaces – from Monday, October 19
  • Exemption for couples during their indoor marriage ceremony or civil partnership registration, providing there is a partition or two metres can be maintained between the couple and other people – Friday, October 16

Existing coronavirus restrictions will remain in place and will be kept under review.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said 'there is no doubt that we are currently in a precarious position'.
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said 'there is no doubt that we are currently in a precarious position'.

“We introduced restrictions on household meetings three weeks ago, together with very tough additional restrictions last week," Ms Sturgeon said.

“However, the most recent of those changes, in particular, will not yet be having an impact on case numbers. And there is no doubt that we are currently in a precarious position.

“That explains why I can confirm to the parliament that all of our existing Covid restrictions will remain in place.”

Regarding travel, the First Minister said: “People living in any of the central Scotland health board areas under tighter restrictions should not travel outside their own area unless they really need to – and people in other parts of Scotland should not travel to these areas unless absolutely necessary.

“Please avoid travel to other parts of the UK considered high-risk areas. We specifically ask people not to go on trips to Blackpool unless necessary – there are now 286 infection cases in Scotland associated with Blackpool.

“These restrictions are hard – for individuals and businesses – but they are essential.”



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