The Scottish Government hopes to have removed the stay at home restriction by April 5, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has announced.
Speaking to MSPs in the Scottish Parliament on Tuesday, Ms Sturgeon said lockdown would ease in phases, separated by at least three weeks, culminating in the removal of the stay at home order and education returning fully on April 5.
Non-essential shops, gyms, hospitality businesses and hairdressers could all reopen by the end of April, with social distancing measures in place if coronavirus transmission continues to fall across the country.
After lockdown is lifted, Scotland will move back to the levels system.
The rest of primary school years, as well as more senior phase pupils in secondary schools, will be part of the second phase – which will come no earlier than March 15 – along with an increase in outdoor mixing to four people from two households.
Communal worship, a further extension to outdoor mixing and more freedoms in retail are also hoped to be put in place from April 5.
The full strategic framework has been published and can be read in full here.
Ms Sturgeon said she is “optimistic” about restoring “more normality” to people’s lives in the coming months.
Announcing Scotland’s revised road map out of lockdown, Nicola Sturgeon said Scots would have to accept some trade-offs in the near future to see a longer-term unlocking in the country.
She said: “It is important to stress, of course, that all of this depends on us continuing to suppress the virus now – and continuing to accept some trade-offs for a period, for example on international travel.
“However, if we do so, I am optimistic that we can make good progress in returning more normality to our lives and the economy.
“I know this is still a cautious approach which though absolutely essential to control the virus and protect health, is extremely difficult for many businesses.”
The phases have been outlined by the Scottish Government as follows:
22 February: Early learning and childcare and schools open for Primary 1-3 pupils and senior phase pupils for essential practical work. Limited increase in the provision for vulnerable children.
Care homes opening to facilitate meaningful contact between relatives/ friends and residents.
Unlikely before March 15: More school reopening. Non-contact outdoor group sports for 12-17 year olds. Socialising rules eased, to allow outdoor meetings of four people from two households.
At least three weeks later – possibly April 5: Stay-at-Home requirement removed.
Third and final phase of schools reopening if required. Places of worship can open on a restricted numbers basis. Essential retailers list expanded slightly and click-and-collect resumes for non-essential retail.
Possibly April 26: Limited other easing within Level 4, including permitting non-essential work in people’s homes.
Return to variable Levels approach. This will enable the graduated opening up of economic and social activity.
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