Thu 16 Apr, 2020

It is vital we follow scientific advice and look at what has been done in the countries that are now beginning to drop restrictions. Alison Johnstone

Although lockdown must continue for the time being, the Scottish Government should begin to prepare an exit strategy for lifting restrictions safely in the future, the Scottish Greens have said.

Lockdown and social isolating is likely to last for several more weeks, and experts have told the Scottish Greens that Scotland will only be able to start to lift restrictions safely if it has the capacity in place to test, trace and isolate those with symptoms and people they have been in contact with.

This was also central to the advice today from the World Health Organisation’s briefing.

Nicola Sturgeon committed to such a strategy at virtual FMQs today under questioning by Alison Johnstone MSP, but stopped short of confirming whether Scotland has the capacity to implement it.

The Scottish Greens health spokesperson and parliamentary co-leader said: “It is absolutely right that lockdown should continue to keep us safe, but in this fourth week, many will understandably be starting to feel cooped up and isolated. People need to know there’s a light at the end of the tunnel and a clear exit strategy to get us there.

“The scientific advice is clear. Swift deployment of a test-trace-isolate strategy is the only way we will be able come out of lockdown in the future and prevent further virus peaks. Scotland must build the capacity to do this now. That means the ability to test everyone with symptoms and trace all the people they have been in contact with.

“It is vital we follow scientific advice and look at what has been done in the countries that are now beginning to drop restrictions.”

Get involved

More like this

Scottish Greens welcome public health caution from FM

Thu 2 Jul, 2020

The First Minister’s cautious approach to easing lockdown has been welcomed by the Scottish Greens.

Among today’s announcements was the move to making face coverings mandatory in shops, which Scottish Green health spokesperson Alison Johnstone called for on Monday.

There will also be a relaxation of the two-metre distancing rule for some hospitality businesses.

Time to make face coverings mandatory, say Greens

Tue 30 Jun, 2020

Scotland should follow 50 other countries by making face coverings mandatory in shops, the Scottish Greens have said.

This includes countries that have been most effective in reducing the spread of COVID-19 such as Germany, Taiwan, Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore, and South Korea.

Currently face coverings are mandatory on public transport but remain ‘recommended’ in shops and other indoor spaces. A single easy-to-communicate rule could massively increase usage, Scottish Green health spokesperson Alison Johnstone has said.

Urgency needed on green jobs

Wed 24 Jun, 2020

The Scottish Government must move quickly to invest in green jobs such as those upgrading homes to make them warmer and more efficient, the Scottish Greens have said.

The call comes after the First Minister’s Advisory Group on Economic Recovery warned of a “potential tsunami” of job losses and recommended a job guarantee for young people in Scotland, a move endorsed by parliament yesterday.