FM ‘expects’ to announce move to phase two tomorrow

The First Minister will update the country on Scotland's lockdown measures on Thursday.

The First Minister has said she “expects” to announce the move to phase two of the plan to leave lockdown on Thursday.

According to Scotland’s route map, it should mean indoor meetings between two households will be allowed, while more than two households should be permitted to meet outside.

Nicola Sturgeon has stressed not all phase two measures will necessarily be implemented straight away after her government reviews lockdown measures on Thursday.

She said any easing of restrictions must be done in a “cautious and phased” manner to continue to “hammer down the virus now”.

But the move to phase two is expected to provide dates for when beer gardens and outdoor restaurants, outdoor markets, small shops, factories and warehouses can reopen, potentially as early as Friday.

Speaking at First Minister’s Questions on Wednesday, Sturgeon said: “Tomorrow, I expect to be able to confirm the move from phase one to phase two of our plan to emerge from lockdown and I will set out much more detail on that tomorrow.

“However, we will continue to proceed in a cautious and phased way because the more we hammer down the virus now, the more normality we can ultimately get back in all aspects of our life.

“Our ‘test and protect’ system is, of course, vitally important to our plans to emerge safely from lockdown.”

‘Test and protect’ is a scheme designed to test all suspected cases of coronavirus, trace all their contacts and support them to self-isolate for 14 days where necessary.

The First Minister highlighted new Public Health Scotland figures which showed that between May 28 until June 14, a total of 992 people had tested positive for Covid-19.

Of these, 891 have had their contacts fully traced.

A total of 1239 people have been told to self-isolate due to being in close contact with someone who later tested positive.

It comes as nine new deaths of people with the virus were confirmed in Scotland, taking the total included presumed cases to 4084.

There have been 21 new Covid-19 cases reported overnight, taking Scotland’s total over the course of the pandemic to 18,066.

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