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FM to confirm phase two

Passengers ‘to wear face covers’ on public transport

FFP3 face masks

Masks likely to become compulsory

Passengers on buses and trains in Scotland will have to adopt the same practice as travellers in England and wear face coverings, according to industry sources.

The move is expected to be announced as part of the next phase of lockdown easing due to be announced by the First Minister.

Nicola Sturgeon will set out the government’s new guidelines amid a new warning that Scotland would have the worst performing economy in the developed world as GDP slumped in April by almost a fifth.

Ms Sturgeon, who has so far resisted making face coverings compulsory, will accept the need do so as part of a series of measures to inspire confidence in using public transport, according to The Scotsman.

Up to 70% of Scots questioned in weekly polls by passenger watchdog Transport Focus have said they would only use buses and trains if people wore face coverings.

shop closed in Covid

Shops hope to get a reopening date (pic: Terry Murden)

Confirmation of compulsory face coverings on buses and trains would bring Scotland into line with England, where they have been mandatory since Monday

A spokesperson for Transport Scotland said: “Our advice is clear – a face covering should be worn when travelling on public transport unless you have a valid health reason not to do so.”

Ms Sturgeon is keen to kickstart the economy, particularly after new figures showing Scotland’s economy shrank by 18.9% in April. She will confirm that the country is ready to move into phase two of the easing measures.

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She is expected to announce a date for shops selling non-essential goods to reopen – likely to be the end of June – but not indoor shopping malls.

Pubs and restaurants will be given an indication when they can trade.

The tourism industry has already been told it can restart on 15 July and there will be further clarification of what businesses this includes as it encompasses a range of activities from retail to zoos.

Workers will be allowed to return to construction sites, factories, warehouses and laboratories, in accordance with social distancing guidelines.

Playgrounds and sports courts will be reopened together with professional sport.

Marriages and civil ceremonies should restart, but outdoors and with limited numbers. 

It is unlikely there will be a change from the two-metre rule.

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