The public feels 'angry and frustrated' at Dominic Cummings, Nicola Sturgeon says
The First Minister said: "you should not leave your home for any reason” if anyone in the household shows symptoms of COVID-19
Nicola Sturgeon has said that she expects the public feels “angry and frustrated” by news that the Prime Minister’s chief advisor Dominic Cummings may have broken lockdown.
The First Minister urged people not to give up on following the rules as restrictions begin to be lifted this week, saying that it is “vital” to observe public health guidance because it helps to save lives, “and not just because people like me ask or tell you to”.
Sturgeon added that “you should not leave your home for any reason” if anyone in the household shows symptoms of COVID-19.
The First Minister was speaking during the Scottish Government’s daily coronavirus briefing, at the same time as the UK Government announced that Cummings would today make a public statement and take questions over allegations he broke lockdown rules.
Cummings is alleged to have driven from London to a family home in Durham with his wife and child after his wife began showing coronavirus symptoms, days before he too became ill.
It is claimed he made the 260 mile journey in order to secure childcare for his son in case he and his wife became incapacitated.
In addition, it is claimed that he visited a beauty spot 30 miles away from Durham and made a second trip to the northern English city after he and his family had returned to London in early April.
The Prime Minister yesterday defended Cummings, saying he “acted legally, responsibly and with integrity” but the incident has sparked a major row at Westminster.
Sturgeon said that she is of the view that Cummings should resign and that Prime Minister Boris Johnson had "put political interest above the public interest".
She also said that she sympathised with everybody who had made “sacrifices” during the pandemic, especially parents and grandparents.
She said: “I know that many people, parents in particular, will have made difficult decisions.
“Grandparents will not have seen new grandchildren; parents will have struggled with childcare and no access to friends and family to support them.
“Many people have been denied the chance to say a final farewell to loved ones.
“The sacrifices have been tough and many people will live with the pain of them for a long time to come.”
She thanked people for “the individual decisions that so many have made”, which she said had very often been” heart-breaking” but had “helped to prevent even more heartbreak.”
Sturgeon said that the number of coronavirus deaths in Scotland had fallen for three consecutive weeks, with three being reported in the past 24 hours, but warned that there was a “genuine danger” that the virus could run out of control again unless people are careful to follow rules.
She said that an “absolutely crucial” part of the rules now and in the future would be for people to know what to do if they show symptoms of COVID-19.
If anyone thinks they could have the virus, Sturgeon said, they should self-isolate at home for a period of seven days and get a test. Everyone else in the household should self-isolate for 14 days in case they, too, develop symptoms.
Sturgeon added: “It is worth stressing again that self-isolation is not the same as lockdown. When you self-isolate you should not go out to shops, or go out for exercise, or go to work at all.
“You should not leave your home for any reason.”
She said that people needing support of any kind, including with childcare, should call the national helpline for help on 0800 111 4000.
The Scottish Government has confirmed that there has been three deaths from COVID-19 in the past 24 hours, bringing the national total by the daily measure to 2,273.
There are 15,156 confirmed coronavirus cases, with 1,269 people in hospital, 40 of which are in intensive care.