Don't go to Scottish Boxing Day sales, warns health secretary

Scots have been told to avoid Boxing Day sales amid fears the Christmas period could spark a rise in cases of Covid-19.

Speaking at the Scottish Government’s daily coronavirus briefing on Friday, health secretary Jeane Freeman was asked what her message would be to those planning on taking advantage of the Boxing Day sales.

Responding, Ms Freeman said nothing in the sales was worth the risk of transmitting Covid-19.

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She said: "The simple thing I would say is avoid crowded places, we keep saying that.

Boxing Day shoppers are being told to avoid the sales.
Boxing Day shoppers are being told to avoid the sales.

"Boxing Day sales are notoriously crowded places. Please avoid crowded places.

"There can be nothing in those sales that is worth that risk, so please don’t take it.”

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Ms Freeman called on shoppers to leave a shop if it is crowded.

She said: “Any shop that is crowded – don't go, and if you do go and you find that it's crowded, please don't go in; leave.

"That's not new advice. That's been our advice for some weeks now.

"It's about avoiding crowded places, because where there are crowded places then that's where the virus has yet another excellent chance to move from one person to another."

She was backed up on the topic by national clinical director Jason Leitch.

He said: “I completely agree. I had written down ‘online’ and underlined it three times.

"That may not be popular with retailers and I am deeply sorry, but it is really risky to go to the crowds so please try to avoid that.

"On Boxing Day or tomorrow, avoid it any time, particularly when you know it is going to be busy and if it is busy, leave.”

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