First Minister urges people to take social distancing seriously

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon

Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has warned people living in Scotland to take social distancing seriously, and has stressed that life should not "feel normal" at the moment.

The First Minister added that the guidance should be taken as a "set of rules" and not just advice.

Coronavirus has now taken 10 lives in Scotland, and it has been confirmed that at least 416 people have contracted the virus.

Ms Sturgeon said at a press conference in St Andrew's House in Edinburgh today, "Let me be clear, the advice should not be considered optional, it should be seen instead as a set of rules to be followed."

The Scottish Government has also confirmed that 200,000 people with severe health problems will be contacted by mail this week, and will be advised to self isolate in order to protect themselves from COVID-19.

Many pubs took the decision to remain open in Scotland during the weekend, despite being instructed to close.  All pubs, clubs, restaurants, cafes, cinemas, gyms and leisure centres were ordered to close by the Prime Minister on Friday.

Police Scotland will be contacting any establishments that are ignoring the new rules and will serve emergency closure orders.

Deputy chief constable Malcolm Graham criticised the pubs for being "absolutely reckless and endangers not only the lives of customers, but wider communities".

The First Minister said that while it is OK to go outside for exercise, people should do their best to avoid crowds.  She said "If you go out in the sunshine follow the social distancing guidance on your own or with one or two others.  Beaches should not be busy, parks should not be full."

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