‘A moment for care and caution’ urges FM amid rising cases
The First Minister has said today that the nation is facing “a moment for care and caution,” ahead of a pending decision on Tuesday, July 19th, on whether all areas in Scotland will drop to Level 0 of coronavirus restrictions.
In a special briefing today, Nicola Sturgeon said she hoped the country could move as planned to Level 0 from Tuesday, as the recent spike in COVID cases is said to be “leveling off.”
However, she said that if the drop in restrictions does come about as planned, it will not spell an “abrupt end” to all restrictions as it would be wrong to be “throwing all caution to the wind.”
“This is a moment for care and caution,” she said, as she stressed the importance of protecting Scotland’s NHS services, which are already under pressure in certain areas, due to the recent increase in infections.
In relation to the UK Government’s plan to do away with all restrictions from July 19, the First Minister said that for Scotland, the date should not be interpreted as “Freedom Day.”
“While I do understand the desire that some have for us to follow suit, we have to think carefully about the steps we take,” she said.
“It is worth pointing out that the path the UK Government is embarking on is for England, which is entirely a matter for them. A path of not just lifting all restrictions from July 19, but also removing the requirement for basic mitigation like face masks — and doing it against the backdrop of increasing cases is something of an exception.
“My job is not to take the easy decisions in a quest for popularity, it is to do what I think is most likely to keep the country as safe as possible.”
The decision on whether the country will drop to Level 0 will be announced on Tuesday, July 19.