Covid Scotland: Don't force hospitality into new lockdown unless it is absolutely necessary – Steve Cardownie
The hospitality sector is right to be concerned about the implications of Professor Jason Leitch’s statement that there had to be a “reverse gear” when it came to looking at the possible reintroduction of some Covid restrictions which might not be a “short, sharp shock” but turning off “some bits of society”.
It is, of course, imperative that everything possible is done to ensure that schools remain open but the hospitality sector should not be used as a soft target if infection rates do not improve.
That sector in particular has done everything that was demanded of it to help curb the transmission of Covid and many went beyond the gvernment’s demands by introducing measures of their own.
People’s quality of life has significantly improved now that they are allowed to visit bars and restaurants and meet up with acquaintances that have been sorely missed due to previous Covid restrictions.
Stephen Montgomery, of the Scottish Hospitality Group, was abundantly clear when he said that “hospitality is the first to go and the last to come back, we know that. A lot of hospitality businesses are just now treading water and furlough is keeping them afloat. Come Christmas, I think we are going to see a lot of businesses going to the wall and any further lockdowns could be a disaster for the industry.”
If, as Prof Leitch contends, that a “reverse gear” may be engaged then it has to be backed up with irrefutable evidence that it is absolutely necessary and not just simply pointing a finger at a popular sector which has already suffered immense damage.