Labour calls for urgent action if restriction easing goes ahead

Scottish Labour deputy leader Jackie Baillie said the plan to lift restrictions from Monday ‘hangs in the balance’.

Labour calls for urgent action if restriction easing goes ahead PA Media
Jackie Baillie calls for urgent action if restriction easing is to go ahead.

The Scottish Government must show “urgency and ambition” on vaccinations and contact tracing if there is to be no delay in easing Scotland’s coronavirus restrictions, Labour has said.

Scottish Labour’s health spokeswoman, Jackie Baillie, warned that the planned lifting of restrictions from next Monday “hangs in the balance”.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon will announce whether all of Scotland will be able to move to level zero when she addresses a recalled Scottish Parliament on Tuesday.

Ahead of the statement, Baillie called for “immediate action” to tackle the pandemic, including cutting the eight-week wait between vaccine doses to four weeks.

She said: “The SNP has lost control of the pandemic and our exit from lockdown hangs in the balance.

“We need immediate action that meets the scale of the crisis before us.

“That’s why Scottish Labour is calling for the time between vaccine doses to be cut to four weeks, in line with the WHO’s advice, to speed up the vaccine rollout.

“We are also calling on the Government to get a grip of our failing Test and Protect system and instead of cutting corners and lowering standards, do all that they can to support the staff in their efforts.

“We also need to see leadership on long Covid if we are to avoid another health and economic crisis after the pandemic has passed.”

Baillie added: “Make no mistake, any delay to the easing of the restrictions will be the result of SNP inaction and failure.

“We are at a crucial moment in the pandemic – it’s about time we showed the urgency and ambition that we need.”