Household visits now banned in Scotland to reduce spread of virus

Credit: PA

Visits between different households are now banned until further notice in Scotland, in a bid to stop coronavirus cases continuing to rise.

The First Minister announced the new measures, with exemptions for people living alone who form extended households, non-cohabiting couples and those who need childcare.

Speaking in Scottish Parliament on Tuesday, Nicola Sturgeon said the decision to limit contact between households was based on evidence from the Test and Protect. It showed this was the way the virus was spreading the most.

Credit: PA

Sturgeon described the new rules were “necessary and essential”.

“Keeping to all these rules isn’t easy – but they remain the best way for all of us to protect ourselves, each other, the NHS and ultimately save lives.

“All of this is incredibly tough – and six months on it only gets tougher.

“Though it doesn’t feel like this now, this pandemic will pass.

“It won’t last forever and one day, hopefully soon, we will be looking back on it, not living through it.”

The First Minister also announced that pubs and restaurants will have a curfew of 10pm every evening, people should not share cars with other households and employers should “rethink” bringing staff back into workplaces if they do not need to be there.

Sturgeon addressed Scotland on Tuesday night, after the Prime Minister's speech. She said: “For everyone, adults and children, I know that today must feel like a step backwards.

“But please know that thanks to all your efforts over the last six months, we are in a much stronger position than in the spring.

“Cases are rising but less rapidly than back then.

“Our Test and Protect system is working well – tracing contacts and breaking chains of transmission.

“We have much more information on how and where the virus spreads.”

Concluding her statement, the First Minister urged people to remember “that humanity has come through even bigger challenges than this one”.

She went on: “Though it doesn’t feel like it now, this virus will pass – it won’t last forever and one day, hopefully soon, we will be looking back on it, not living through it.

“So though we are all struggling with this – and believe me, we are all struggling – let’s pull together.

“Let’s keep going, try to keep smiling, keep hoping and keep looking out for each other."