From 19 July, all of Scotland is moving to level 0. Although this offers more freedom than levels 1-4, there are still restrictions in place to keep everyone safe, so it’s important we all keep to them to protect our family and friends and the wider community.
There are 5 COVID-19 protection levels in place in Scotland. These levels set out measures that can be applied nationally or locally. They depend on the number of coronavirus cases across Scotland.
The levels system has been introduced to make it easier for everyone to understand what protective measures are in place in their area. It also means that if your area is moving from one level to another, you’ll know what to expect.
What do the different levels mean?
Level 0 has the fewest restrictions – it is close to the place we were in last summer, with most businesses open and indoor socialising permitted. Level 4 has the strongest restrictions.
Who decides which level each area is in?
This decision is made by the Scottish Government, on the basis of advice from local Directors of Public Health and Public Health Scotland, through the National Incident Management Team, and the assessment of senior Government advisors, also taking into account factors such as general health and wellbeing, and how local businesses will be affected. The Scottish Government will also engage with local authority partners prior to making decisions.
How will I know if the level my area in is changing?
Levels will be reviewed every week to see whether they should be maintained, increased, or reduced. However, areas are likely to move between levels less frequently than that. Once set, levels are likely to be in place for two to four weeks at least, to give time for the effect of the changes to show.
I’m finding life hard – where can I get help and support?
The coronavirus pandemic has been really tough for everyone, particularly parents. If you feel you’re struggling, there is support to help you cope with any difficulties you’re having. Our page on finding support has lots of information to help you, from financial support, ways to help you or your child’s mental health, to practical info on arranging childcare. Our family support directory brings together all the helpful organisations, benefits and information that support parents and carers, no matter what your situation or stage your child is at. Remember, there’s nothing wrong with asking for help when you need it.
I’ve been shielding, how does the levels system affect me?
At the beginning of the pandemic, people at very high risk of severe illness from coronavirus were advised to shield, to minimise the chance of catching the virus. Shielding was paused from 1 August. However, the Scottish Government is advising people who were shielding to take extra precautions. You can find out more about this at the Scottish Government website.