Nicola Sturgeon warns post-pub drinks with friends 'defeats the purpose' of Covid-19 measures

The First Minister said she expects people to stop socialising at 10pm.

Wednesday, 23rd September 2020, 4:45 pm
Nicola Sturgeon has urged people not to drink at friend's houses after 10pm
Nicola Sturgeon has urged people not to drink at friend's houses after 10pm

Nicola Sturgeon has warned people not to head to their friend’s or family’s houses after an evening at the pub once the curfew on hospitality is in place.

The First Minister, speaking at her daily coronavirus briefing, said ignoring the ban on household visits after pubs and bars have shut at 10pm due to the curfew would be “putting lives at risk” if people decided to meet illegally.

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She said the decision to ban household visits and impose a curfew was in order to avoid transferring risk of transmission from one location to another.

Ms Sturgeon said: “I am going to say something here which is the really difficult message, yes I am asking people not to socialise normally.

"I don’t want to be doing that but it is essential to stop the spread of this virus, that is why I think having a 10pm curfew is the right thing to do, whether it is enough in hospitality is the issue I have been pining on today, but it is right to do that, I certainly don’t think we should have done less than that in hospitality.

“You shouldn’t be taking curfew as an invitation to go and do what you would have been doing in pubs after 10pm somewhere else, that does defeat the purpose.

"We all depend on each other right now because if I say this is what we think we should do to curb the spread of the virus and nobody does it, it’s not going to work and with the best will in the world I can’t change that reality so I need people to work with us.”

Pubs will be forced to close at 10pm from Friday 25 September following the announcement yesterday by the First Minister.

The same rules apply in England, but Ms Sturgeon said she believes more should be done to stop the spread of the virus but that she was unable to do so due to “financial constraints”.

The First Minister said without an extension to the furlough scheme or more borrowing power for the Scottish Government, a curfew was as far as she could go in terms of measures in the hospitality sector.

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