Nicola Sturgeon urges people to 'cut others some slack' amid warnings Covid-19 could be around for years

Nicola Sturgeon has said that neither those saying that she has got everything right and those saying she has got everything wrong are correct and said she tries to not make Covid-19 decisions based on party politics.

Monday, 12th October 2020, 4:45 pm
Nicola Sturgeon has urged the public to 'cut others some slack'
Nicola Sturgeon has urged the public to 'cut others some slack'

The First Minister was answering questions from journalists during her daily coronavirus briefing when she was asked whether it ‘saddened her’ that some viewed her response to the virus through party political or a constitutional lens.

Ms Sturgeon said that it was important for people to “cut each other a bit of slack” as she defended journalists who she said “do ask hard questions” after one raised an example of some online abuse.

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Her comments came as chief medical officer Gregor Smith said that Covid-19 could be around for years but it was likely we would know how to deal with it better and not be subject to rolling lockdowns.

Ms Sturgeon defended herself against accusations of acting solely for political gain and said while some people will “always be suspicious” she is doing so, she said it would only be appropriate to deal with the pandemic through a public health “prism”.

She said: “Given it is a public health challenge and the approach we take to combat it must be driven by public health considerations and I think the vast majority of people recognise that.

"Democracy isn’t suspended and people are entitled to think I get nothing right and of course people are entitled to think I get everything right as well but neither of these things are true, incidentally.

"We are all trying our best right now to make the best decisions and get these things as right as possible but it is a difficult situation that I certainly never led a country through before and I don’t think any leader has led a country through.

"So I’ll make mistakes, I’ll make more mistakes, I try to avoid that and I try to learn from those we do make.”

"Just trying to be understanding of the challenges we are all facing including journalists who are trying to report on a complex, fast moving situation I think would stand us in good stead.

"Hopefully that’s what the vast majority of people do but to those who might want to see things differently, let’s remember this is tough situation of nobody’s making and we’ll get through it better and stronger if we try to cut each other a bit of slack sometimes.”

Interim CMO Gregor Smith said in response to a question around warnings from public health experts that the virus could be with us for years, said it was unlikely normality would return soon.

He added: “I do think we will be living with the virus that causes Covid, SARS-CoV-2 for years to come, however what I will say is I don’t think we’ll be living as we are with this virus.

"Over time what we’ve with all sorts of other infectious diseases as they’ve emerged is that as gradually we’ve found ways of dealing with them whether that be through treatments or vaccines, we evolve our approach to how they impact us in our everyday life.”

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