Staying safe and protecting others
Although the Scottish Government has eased the lockdown slightly, the advice remains to stay at home as much as possible to avoid spreading the virus.
The Scottish Government roadmap is at stage two.
- Face coverings are mandatory on public transport.
- Places of worship can re-open for individual prayer or contemplation.
- Professional sport can resume – with public health restrictions remaining in place.
- Dental practices can re-open to see patients with urgent care needs.
- Outdoor markets can re-open once guidance is implemented.
- Relaxation on restrictions on housing moves.
- Outdoor sports courts can re-open.
- Playgrounds can re-open.
Meeting up with family and friends
- You can now meet with people from other households in groups of up to eight at any one time. However, you should:
- only meet with people from one household at a time, and only one household a day
- meet outdoors (and only go into someone else's house to use the toilet)
- make sure you stay two metres away from other people apart from members of your household
- maintain hand and cough hygiene
- avoid touching hard surfaces such as gates, walls, fences and park benches with your hands
- follow advice on the NHS Inform website about physical distancing and hygiene, and
- wash your hands as soon as you get home
Schools and nurseries
Schools, local authority nurseries, private nurseries, childminders and out of school care are closed until August unless they are staying open to provide emergency childcare for key workers. Information about who is classed as a key worker can be found on the Scottish Government website and information about arrangements in your local area can be found on your local council’s website.
When it’s not safe to stay at home
For most people, staying at home is difficult, but for some people it is not safe, for example, where there is domestic abuse or housing issues.
For specialist advice on domestic abuse, call the domestic abuse helpline on 0800 027 1234 (it also has webchat and email facilities)
For specialist advice on housing, visit Shelter Scotland’s website or call 0808 800 4444
Keeping a ‘social distance’
Any of us could carry the virus but not have symptoms and end up spreading it wherever we go. So, for now, even if we are well, we’re all being asked to:
- Stay safe.
- Keep two metres distance from other people when you’re out and about.
- Wear a face covering, such as a mask, in places which are difficult to physically distance in, such as supermarkets and shops.
- Active travel including walking and cycling in local area for daily exercise.
This is very important because:
- It protects your own, your family’s and everyone’s health, especially those who could be most affected.
- It slows down the spread of the virus.
- It helps the NHS manage.
This is a new way of life (for a while). The usual advice is to get out and about and keep active to keep healthy. So, staying put will be hard. A few simple things you can do to keep yourself and your children as healthy as possible are:
- Keep to routines.
- Go to bed and get up at the same time as usual.
- Eat and drink healthily.
- Stay in touch with friends and family (phone and online).
ParentClub and Parentline have some good advice.
One Parent Families Scotland has produced information about how to keep your children occupied.
Doing the best you can is what counts
It’s hard for everyone to be staying at home the whole time whether you’re working from home or not. Some people will be trying to continue their children’s education, others will be doing their best just to get by.
Some parents will be looking for information and resources to help with their child’s education at home; others will be just trying to get by.
Just remember, maintaining the health and well being of your family is essential, everything else is optional.
If you are worrying about your children missing out because they are not at school, you might be tempted to do more than you all can really manage, like trying to make them do school work for so many hours a day. You can help as best you can, but they also need you to give them and yourself a break:
- Like us, they’ve never experienced anything like this before. Although the idea of being off school might sound great to them, like you, they’ll find it hard being stuck at home and not seeing their friends.
- So, you might see more in the way of meltdowns, tantrums and opposition over the coming weeks. This is natural and to be expected.
- What your children need right now is to feel comforted and loved, and to know that this time will pass.
- If you’ve got a garden, play outside. Go out for walks but keep your distance. Make meals together, paint pictures, play board games and watch films. Do science experiments together or find online tours of zoos and museums and other places. Start a book and read together as a family. Snuggle under blankets and do nothing.
- Everyone’s in the same boat. When they get back to school, the teachers will pick up and start again. Your children won’t lose out in the long run. Do your best to encourage them, but there’s no point in fighting with your children about all this.
- Do your best with them and try to keep in mind that, after this time has passed, how your children feel will be more important in the long run than what they missed at school.
Like it or not, we’ll be using our screens more than usual: for fun; for learning; for working; and for keeping in touch with others. We’ll all be on our screens a lot more but try to keep some sort of limit on this if you can.
And more generally, all curling up to a good film or favourite programme is a great way to have family time and wind down.
Lives in Lockdown
Some parents have kindly shared their experience of living in lockdown with us. You can read 'Lives in lockdown; parents' accounts here.