LiveNicola Sturgeon LIVE: 6 new deaths | 1,246 new cases | Pubs, bars and restaurants close from today

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Friday, 9th October 2020, 12:47 pm

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Coronavirus in Scotland.
Coronavirus in Scotland.

Coronavirus in Scotland LIVE: Friday, October 9, 2020

Last updated: Friday, 09 October, 2020, 13:01

  • New restrictions come in for Scotland’s hospitality
  • 1,246 new cases reported
  • 6 confirmed deaths reported
  • 397 people in hospital with Covid-19

Jason Leitch: Scotland would hit peak at end of October without action

At this rate, with no further action, we will be at our March peak of new infections per day by the end of October.

Jason Leitch

He said experts estimated there were 2,900 new infections every day and that Scotland’s R number was between 1.3 and 1.7.

Scottish Government defines a cafe:

The Scottish Government has clarified its definition of a cafe ahead of new restrictions that will force restaurants, bars and pubs to close in Scotland for two weeks from Friday. 

There were reports of confusion over the definition.

An establishment whose primary business activity, in the ordinary course of its business, is the sale of non alcoholic drinks, snacks or light meals.

Nicola Sturgeon

FM urges caution over travel

Cash grants for businesses required to close

Ms Sturgeon unveiled the three “strands” of the Scottish Government’s £40 million proposals to help support businesses in Scotland.

They are: 

  • Support for employment
  • Cash grants for businesses forced to close
  • A discretionary fund

Ms Sturgeon said she thought the support for employment may be affected by the Chancellor’s announcement, adding that it was designed to “top up” existing furlough payments.

Sturgeon: ‘Covid is a virus which is deadly for some people'

Today’s total – and indeed all of the deaths that have been recorded in recent days – reminds us again that Covid is a virus which is deadly for some people, as well as being dangerous for many more.

First Minister

Sturgeon calls for Chancellor to help Scotland

The First Minister said the Scottish Government was delaying publishing the details of how it will spend its £40 million of aid for businesses impacted by new restrictions in Scotland, because of an expected announcement from the Treasury today.

She called on Chancellor Rishi Sunak to ensure that any furlough support included in the announcement also covers Scotland. 

“I hope they will have a positive impact on our proposals,” Ms Sturgeon said, "so we will publish the details after we have clarity on that. 

“And I would call on the UK Government to ensure that whatever it announces on the furlough applies to Scotland from tonight.”

New rise in deaths in Scotland

Scotland recorded six deaths of confirmed coronavirus patients in the past 24 hours, Nicola Sturgeon has announced.

This takes the total under this measure – patients who died within 28 days of first testing positive – to 2,544.

Sturgeon ‘sorry’ for impact on hospitality

I am desperately sorry for that, and I know how desperately difficult this is for people trying to make a living.

First Minister

Cafe exemption to prevent ‘loneliness’, says Sturgeon

All licenced bars and restaurants will be required to close indoors and outdoors, from 6pm this evening, in Scotland’s central belt, though takeaways will be permitted. 

There will also be an exemption for cafes, as long as they do not serve alcohol. 

The reason for this caffeine exemption is quite simple. It's to give people, particularly those who may be living alone, and also working from home, somewhere that they can still meet a friend for a coffee and a chat, and we judge that is important to help reduce the loneliness and isolation that comes with some of these restrictions.

Nicola Sturgeon

37,033 positive cases in Scotland since start of outbreak

Ms Sturgeon confirmed that 1,246 people had tested positive in Scotland since yesterday, bringing the total number of infections to 37,033. 

440 were in the NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde region, 306 in NHS Lanark, and 192 in NHS Lothians.

1,246 new cases of coronavirus in Scotland

Six new deaths in Scotland in last 24 hours

More police on the streets to enforce new rules

Education Secretary urged to clarify plans for exam diet after National 5s axed

Scottish Labour has demanded action on aspects of next year’s exam diet after National 5 testing was cancelled.

Education Secretary John Swinney announced on Wednesday these exams will not go ahead in 2021, while Higher and Advanced Highers will be pushed back until May 13 to allow pupils to catch up on time missed due to the pandemic.

The decision was made based on recommendations from Professor Mark Priestley of Stirling University, who was asked to conduct a “rapid review” of next year’s exam diet.

However, Labour education spokesman Iain Gray has written to the Education Secretary to raise issues with the changes.

He highlights five points, including a request that coursework will have “primacy”, ensuring a review of the appeals process involves the Children’s Commissioner, and improving transparency within the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA).

Mr Gray also urges clarity on what will replace exams, as well as on when Higher and Advanced Higher exams will take place. Mr Swinney has said they will be delayed until May 13, with regular “check points” up until February to assess if they also need to be cancelled.

Mr Gray said: “The Priestley Report unveiled a litany of failures on behalf of the Education Secretary and the SQA.

“We cannot risk a repeat of the catastrophic SQA results fiasco next year.

“The Scottish Government must provide clarity urgently over how the upcoming National 5 and Higher qualifications will be awarded, ensure that course work has primacy, involve the Children’s Commissioner in the process to avoid a repeat of the infringement of pupils’ rights, and overhaul the culture of intransigence in the SQA.

“We simply cannot afford to gamble with the future of our young people or allow the scandal of this summer to be repeated. It is time for John Swinney to take action over these concerns and get Scotland’s education system back on track.”

In August, the Scottish Government was criticised after exam results grades were based on a computer model, and 124,564 pupils were downgraded.

Minister later changed their mind and original estimates of teachers were allowed to stand for those who were downgraded.

Cafe shutdown exemption not a neat distinction, admits clinical director

Forcing pubs and restaurants across central Scotland to shut but not cafes is “not a neat distinction”, Jason Leitch has admitted.

Scotland’s national clinical director said the new restrictions aim to “curb hospitality” and limit people mixing with other households to slow the spread of coronavirus.

Pubs, bars, restaurants and cafes outside the central belt will only be allowed to operate indoors between 6am and 6pm and not serve alcohol, though drinks can be served until 10pm in outdoor areas.

But pubs and licensed restaurants in five health board areas – Greater Glasgow and Clyde, Lanarkshire, Ayrshire and Arran, Lothian, and Forth Valley – will be forced to close for all but takeaway service for 16 days from 6pm on Friday.

The temporary measures are set to end on Sunday October 25.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon revealed on Thursday that cafes can be exempt from the central belt shutdown if they do not sell alcohol, triggering confusion about how a cafe is defined.

Other changes include shops being asked to return to two metres physical distancing and the reintroduction of earlier measures such as one-way systems.

Speaking on BBC Radio Scotland’s Good Morning Scotland programme on Friday, Professor Leitch acknowledged the measures do not create a “neat division”, but said he expects hospitality venues to “know which they are”.

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