Responding to the First Minister’s announcement that tighter restrictions are being enforced across Scotland and will remain in place for 16 days from Friday, Orkney’s MSP, Liam McArthur commented:
“The new measures being imposed by the Scottish Government are set to put further strain on businesses across Orkney on the back of what has already been a desperately hard year.
“While the government has applied tighter restrictions in areas of the central belt where the risk of infection is much greater, those areas that continue to have very low rates, such as Orkney, are still being affected.
“The First Minister acknowledged in her statement that Orkney and Shetland were the exceptions in terms of rising cases, yet the rules being imposed hardly reflect that fact. As a result, many businesses in Orkney face further financial instability with no guarantee of being able to access additional support.
“The government must start sharing the evidence being used to drive these decisions and allow for proper debate and scrutiny in parliament. Ministers must also explain what they expect these new restrictions to achieve, particularly in areas with already low numbers of cases.
“This will be essential to maintain public confidence and compliance, as the government asks people to make further sacrifices.”