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Scotland: Non-essential retailers to close in 11 council areas

By Huw Hughes

Nov. 18, 2020

The Scottish government is to place 11 councils in the west of the country into the toughest tier of Covid-19 restrictions, meaning non-essential retailers in those areas will be forced to close for three weeks.

The following council areas will move from Level 3 to Level 4 restrictions at 6pm on Friday: The City of Glasgow, Renfrewshire, East Renfrewshire, East Dunbartonshire, West Dunbartonshire, North Lanarkshire, South Lanarkshire, East Ayrshire, South Ayrshire, Stirling and West Lothian.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said the move was necessary to avoid “intolerable” pressure on the NHS and to increase the chances of easing up restrictions before Christmas.

“The clear advice of our public health experts is that we must drive infection rates down further in these areas. They are not confident that Level 3 restrictions will do this to the extent necessary,” Sturgeon said.

“That is why, albeit reluctantly, we have taken the decision to place these areas into Level 4 for three weeks. I know people are frustrated that other restrictions have remained in place longer than planned but Level 4 is intended to be short and sharp. And in this situation, it is specifically intended to have an impact in advance of Christmas and the most winter challenging period.”

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