First Minister Announces Latest Review of COVID-19 Restrictions – 17/02/21

Yesterday (16th Feb), in a statement to the Scottish Parliament the First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, announced details of the review of current lockdown restrictions. During her statement she advised that the exit from the current lockdown is likely to be more cautious than it was last summer

Ms Sturgeon said that the Scottish Government is currently preparing a revised strategic framework, which she hopes will be published next week.  This framework will set out in more detail when and how Scotland might gradually emerge from lockdown. The revised framework will “aim to set out how we will use and balance all the tools at our disposal – restrictions and advice, vaccination, test and protect, and travel restrictions – to restore, on a phased basis, greater normality to our everyday lives.”

We know that members are very keen to get an idea about when lockdown may be lifted for our sector and we hope to have some clarity when the revised framework is published. In the meantime, we would highlight to members that, in her statement, the First Minister indicated that the Scottish Government is “likely to advise against booking Easter holidays, either overseas or within Scotland.” She also added; “For the summer, while it is still highly unlikely that overseas holidays will be possible or advisable, staycations might be – but this will depend on the data nearer the time.”

The First Minister also highlighted that the Scottish Government will be “driven much more by data than dates.”
On the back of yesterday’s statement, ASVA and ALVA have put forward a submission to the Scottish Emergency Response Group (STERG) requesting a review of the levels of financial support offered to our sector through the Strategic Framework Business Fund (SFBF). In the submission we call on the Scottish Government to recognise the impact that ongoing travel restrictions will have on our sector and to provide continual financial support for as long as restrictions impact our industry’s ability to trade at a viable level.

You can read the First Minister’s statement in full at this link.