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Use of face coverings extended into communal workplace areas

Masks are now to be worn in communal workplace areas such as corridors and canteens.

The wearing of face coverings is to become mandatory in communal workplace areas, such as corridors, canteens and social spaces, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon announced today.

During a statement to Parliament, which was delivered virtually, the First Minister also announced that 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:

  • From Friday, October 16: 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 Monday, October 19: The wearing of face coverings in other indoor communal workplaces, such as corridors and social spaces.
  • From Friday, October 16: 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.

Existing coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions will remain in place and will be kept under review.

The First Minister said: “We introduced restrictions on household meetings three weeks ago, together with very tough additional restrictions last week.

“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.”

She also urged against travel to and from the Central Belt area which is under tighter restrictions to the rest of Scotland.

She added: “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.”