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Thu July 02 2020

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Nicola Sturgeon advises building sites to close

23 Mar Scotland's first minister Nicola Sturgeon is advising building sites to close.

The Scottish government is drawing up additional guidance to make clear to business exactly what is expecting of them and how they can make the right judgments about what is essential and what is not essential, said Sturgeon.

She used the word ‘advice’ in relation to a number of recommended actions across all areas of activity but stressed that the measures being suggested should not be seen as optional.

“I said yesterday and I want to repeat again today; life should not be carrying on as normal right now,” she said. “That is not an easy thing to say, it is not something I say lightly. But life should not feel normal for you right now. So if it is, then you are not doing the right things. And I want to ask you today to please put that right.”

She said that it has been clear to here that there are still too many people across the country who are being expected to or expecting to go to work as normal.

“And that presents a serious and unnecessary risk of spreading the virus,” she said. “So I want to reiterate that if you run a business, and if the nature of your business makes it difficult for you or your workers to work from home or to practice safe social distancing, then you should close for the period of the efforts to combat this virus.

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If you are an employee, and your workplace is not abiding by this, I would urge you to speak to your employer and ask that they take action.

“This morning I was specifically asked on the radio about building sites and hair salons, and my advice would be to close,” she said. “I know this is a difficult situation for businesses and I know difficult judgements are having to be made.

“I have therefore asked for additional guidance to be drawn up urgently by government for businesses that will make clear exactly what we are expecting of them and how they can make the right judgments about what is essential and what is not essential.

“The UK government has put in place measures to pay wages, even when workers are not at work – and we are pushing for, and very hopeful of seeing very soon, further measures to support freelancers, the self-employed and contract workers. So, this support is rightly in place and it should enable businesses now to do the right thing for themselves and for their workers.”

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