LiveCoronavirus in Scotland LIVE: Portugal added to quarantine list

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Coronavirus in Scotland.

Coronavirus in Scotland LIVE: Friday, September 4

Last updated: Friday, 04 September, 2020, 13:53

  • Portugal removed from list of travel exemptions for Scots
  • 101 Covid-19 cases reported on Thursday
  • 1 new confirmed death from Covid-19 on Thursday

Grant Shapps: "Scotland jumped the gun on Greece quarantine”

Uk Transport Secretary Grant Shapps has criticised the Scottish Government’s decision to exclude Greece from a list of quarantine-exempt countries. 

On Wednesday, the Scottish Government announced that travellers returning from Greece to Scotland must self-isolate for 14 days. 

Speaking on the BBC's Today programme, Mr Shapps said: "On Wednesday the Scots - without using the joint bio-security centre data for this particular decision - decided that people from Greece would be excluded, and jumped the gun on that.

“It is their right to do it but it doesn't make the overall message any clearer,” he added.

More positive cases in Covid-19 outbreak linked with slaughterhouse

The number of Covid-19 cases linked to a Highland slaughterhouse has risen, NHS Highland has confirmed.

Coronavirus cases in Grantown have risen from 31 to 33, with 30 cases being linked to the Millers of Speyside abattoir, up one from Thursday.

The abattoir has voluntarily closed for two weeks.

NHS Highland is carrying out contact tracing within the community, with any close contacts being advised to self isolate.

Dr Tim Allison, director of public health, said: “Work continues in following up contacts and appropriate advice is being given to those we have identified.

“The investigation so far is showing that the majority of these confirmed cases are linked with Millers of Speyside abattoir.

“While it is good news that there is no significant community transmission, it is important that we do not become complacent and continue to follow the national guidance to keep you and others safe.

“This includes physical distancing, wearing a face-covering when in enclosed spaces, cleaning your hands and surfaces regularly and immediately self-isolating if you develop symptoms.”

The NHS is also advising that anyone with Covid-19 symptoms should book a test.

Royal Mail is collecting completed test kits from priority postboxes. The priority postbox for Grantown is located at the Post Office, 6-26 High Street.

Priority postboxes are being used for the return of UK Government test kits that have been ordered via the online postal portal.

Health officials said if anyone requires to self-isolate and needs support, such as with food supplies or financial assistance, they should contact Highland Council’s freephone helpline on 0300 303 1362.

Children in care urgently need tutoring service, Labour says

Children in care urgently need extra tutoring support to improve the attainment gap in education, Scottish Labour has said.

The party’s education spokesman Iain Gray said inequalities could become a “yawning chasm”.

Figures released earlier this week showed the proportion of care-experienced pupils who achieved at least one National 5 qualification was 35%, compared with 85% for all pupils.

Mr Gray is calling on the Scottish Government to implement a tutoring scheme for all children in the care system to help bridge the gap, in line with a recommendation from the Who Cares? Scotland charity.

He was told by Children’s Minister Maree Todd that Scottish Government funding had allowed some local authorities to introduce a tutoring service for looked-after children.

Who Cares? Scotland has highlighted the UK Government’s National Tutoring Programme for the most disadvantaged pupils in England, saying there should be an equivalent scheme in Scotland.

Mr Gray said: “This pandemic has exacerbated all of the ingrained inequalities in our education system, and these are the most extreme.

“These figures pre-date Covid-19, and show that young people in care were already falling further behind their peers.

“If we are to avoid letting down a whole generation of looked-after children, we must act swiftly to enhance their future prospects.”

He added: “The Scottish Government talks a lot about supporting looked-after children, but in an answer to a question tabled by me, the Government turns down flat a proposal from Who Cares? Scotland for a tutoring scheme to help children in care.

“If the Government fails to act, it risks letting a wide attainment gap turn into a yawning chasm.

“The Scottish Government owes it to an entire generation of pupils in care to act swiftly to improve their chances of success later in life.”

Police issued “around 10” fines for 300 house parties last weekend

DCC Malcolm Graham told BBC Radio Scotland that investigations are ongoing into the 300 house parties reported to police last weekend. 

DCC Malcolm Graham: Police “understand how difficult it is"

Mr Graham issued a “plea” ahead of the weekend for the public to take personal responsibility this weekend, but said police “understand how difficult it is” to be kept away from friends. 

DCC Malcolm Graham: “we should be shocked” by Midlothian house party

“It was a blatant disregard for the law," Mr Graham said, adding that Police Scotlant had received reports of 300 house parties across Scotland last weekend. He said the vast majority of people are sticking to the rules. 

Jason Leitch: rise in cases could be down to “too many people dropping their guard"

He said the rise in infections in the West of Scotland appears to be linked to homes. He said that “one big house party with 300 people” was not to blame for the increase, but said it could be due to “too many people dropping their guard" and not following social distancing measures indoors.  

Jason Leitch: Rise in transmission rate “not entirely unexpectedly"

The National Clinical Director told BBC Radio Scotland said the R number, which measures the number of people each infected person goes on to infect, “overreacts to clusters”.

He said the R number rising was “not a good thing” and described it as “worrying”, but insisted that when numbers of infections are low, it becomes a less reliable measure of the outbreak. 

Portugal added to Scotland’s quarantine list after rise in coronavirus cases

Passengers arriving in Scotland from Portugal or French Polynesia will have to self-isolate for two weeks as of Saturday, the Scottish Justice Secretary has confirmed.

Humza Yousaf revealed the measures around an hour after the Welsh Government announced a 14-day quarantine rule for travellers from the European country and a number of Greek islands.

It follows an increase in positive coronavirus test results for Portugal, with cases rising and staying above 20 per 100,000.

Mr Yousaf said: “We are in the midst of a global pandemic and the situation in many countries can change suddenly.

“Therefore, people should think very hard before committing to non-essential travel abroad.

“With Scotland’s relatively low infection rate, importation of new cases is a significant risk to public health.

“I am also concerned by the level of infections in Gibraltar and we will be monitoring the situation there very carefully.

“Regular discussions continue with the other three governments in the UK.

“We continue to closely monitor the situation in all parts of the world and base the decisions we make on the scientific evidence available.”

The rules come into effect as of 4am on Saturday.

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