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Coronavirus: what are the new face mask rules in Scotland?

DC
BY Douglas Cameron
Health & Safety
BG Orange

The Health Protection (Coronavirus) (Restrictions and Requirements) (Additional Temporary Measures) (Scotland) Amendment Regulations 2020 came into force on October 16th 2020.

These Regulations were followed by the following Face Covering amendment:

Face Covering Requirement:

A person who enters or remains within an indoor communal area in a workplace must wear a face covering, unless the person is:

  • a child who is under 5 years of age,
  • a constable acting in the course of duty,
  • an emergency responder e.g. first aider, acting in that capacity,
  • in an area where there are measures in place to keep that person separated from any other person by a partition or a distance of at least two metres,
  • seeking medical assistance where the wearing of a face covering would materially impede the seeking of the assistance, or the assistance is emergency assistance and either the person does not have a face covering with them or there is not time to put one on,
  • providing care or assistance to a vulnerable person, including emergency assistance, where the wearing of a face covering would materially impede the seeking of the assistance, or the assistance is emergency assistance and either the person does not have a face covering with them or there is not time to put one on,
  • acting to avoid injury, or illness or to escape a risk of harm, where the wearing of a face covering would materially impede the seeking of the assistance, or the assistance is emergency assistance and either the person does not have a face covering with them or there is not time to put one on,
  • unable to put on, wear or remove a face covering because of any physical or mental illness or impairment or disability (as defined by the Equality Act 2010) or without severe distress,
  • a person who has difficulties communicating (in relation to speech, language or otherwise) and relies on lip reading or facial expression to be able to communicate,
  • eating or drinking,
  • taking part in exercise of a type which reasonably requires that the person is not wearing a face covering,
  • taking medication, the taking of which reasonably requires that the person is not wearing a face covering,
  • complying with a request by a relevant person police or designated local authority official and for security related identification purposes,  
  • undertaking food handling tasks, to avoid risk to the hygiene or safety of food arising from or in connection with the wearing of a face covering,
  • undertaking tasks in the course of their employment, where the wearing of a face covering would cause a material risk of harm.

The definition of “communal area” is where persons mingle or gather e.g. passageways, stairs, lifts, staff rooms, training rooms, changing rooms, or entrances.

 

Marriage Ceremonies and/or Civil Partnerships:

In addition to the previous Regulations, which has been a part exemption for face coverings:

  • at a funeral, marriage ceremony or civil partnership registration and leading the service, ceremony or registration where there is a partition between the person and any other person, or a distance of at least two metres is maintained between the person and any other person

The Regulations now add:

  • at a marriage ceremony or civil partnership registration and is one of the parties to be married or entering into a civil partnership, where there is a partition between the parties and any other person, or a distance of at least two metres is maintained between the parties and any other person”

LAW's plain English translation of the above: the happy couple do not have to wear face coverings if one of these two control measures are in place.

 

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LAW clients can seek coronavirus guidance from the Health & Safety At Work team throughout.

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