Nicola Sturgeon insists measures on household gatherings ARE working in Scotland

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The SNP leader told the Scottish Parliament the number of new coronavirus cases is now growing more slowly than at the start of October. Scotland’s First Minister added COVID-19 cases were not doubling within a nine-day period – as was previously feared. 

Ms Sturgeon said: “The good news is that we believe the restrictions on household gatherings may already be having an effect.

“The number of new cases is growing more slowly than at the start of the month.

“We have not seen the nine-day doubling of cases that was predicted earlier this month.

“We hope that the effect of the difficult and I know unwelcome restrictions on hospitality which have been enforced now for just over two weeks will soon start to be seen as well.”

The SNP leader also stressed the importance of implementing and following restrictions now in order to have some normality by Christmas.

She said: “For all of Scotland our aim is to get to Level 1 and then to Level 0 of the framework as quickly as it is possible to do.

“We know it is possible because over the summer we got to the very low levels of transmission that would be needed for that.

“If we dig in now and get COVID under more control, we perhaps open the door not to 100 percent normality by Christmas, but hopefully more than we have right now. We all want to see that.”

However, leader of the Scottish Conservatives in Holyrood, Ruth Davidson, called for greater clarity regarding the Christmas period.  

She said: “We need a plan for Christmas.

“If we want people to continue working within the rules for the long-term, they shouldn’t be faced with a choice where family needs override their buy in to compliance.”

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Richard Leonard the leader of Scottish Labour Party outlined the need for greater cross-party communication on coronavirus restrictions.  

He said: “The government has been trying to build a cross-party consensus over the last week.

“We need to get this right: communities are suffering and businesses are suffering, Scotland has already paid a price.

“Members of this Parliament need to be able to ask questions of Government ministers in this Parliament about this framework in advance of us voting on it.”

It comes as Ms Sturgeon outlined a new Covid Level system to help slow the spread of the virus.

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