1. News
February 22, 2022

Scottish retailers seek guidance on revised Covid framework

The Scottish Government's updated guidelines come after Northern Ireland and England ended their face covering regulations.

Retailers in Scotland have urged the Scottish Government to provide clarity on statutory requirements affecting stores and their customers.

This week, the government published its updated Covid framework, outlining how it plans to deal with the Covid-19 pandemic going forward.

The Scottish Retail Consortium (SRC) trade association is seeking a timeline for the lifting of preventative measures for shops, including the use of plastic screens and barriers, physical distancing in queues and floor markings.

The SRC has also asked for clarity on whether customers are required to wear face coverings in stores, as they have been since July 2020.

Customers in Northern Ireland and England no longer need to wear face coverings in stores, while Wales is due to stop requiring them in shops next month.

SRC director David Lonsdale said: “Strong progress has been made in battling the pandemic.

“As we move towards a new phase in dealing with Covid, the SRC is looking for a timeframe for ending the remaining restrictions that shops must follow, including such things as the installing of perspex screens, maintaining physical distancing in queuing and floor markings.

“Many shops are still trying to find their feet after 23 months of complying with Covid restrictions, with an inevitable impact on shopper footfall, and sales and would welcome early visibility over plans to remove these final curbs.

“Over and above this, we need to see a concerted plan with a more upbeat message to encourage and entice shoppers back to our city centres.”

Last month, data from the British Retail Consortium (BRC) and Sensormatic IQ revealed that total retail footfall in the UK last year fell by 33.2% from two years previous.

Retail footfall declined by 18.6% from 28 November to 1 January compared with the same period of 2019

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