Beyond Level 0 Guidance Update
The First Minister provided a Covid-19 update on 14 December 2021, outlining the increased challenge posed by the Omicron variant, the priority being placed on the continued emphasis on supporting the vaccine and booster programme, and the need for businesses to strengthen compliance with current protection measures.
Businesses and service providers are now legally required to take reasonably practical measures to minimise spread of coronavirus on their premises, taking into consideration Scottish Government guidance available at Scottish Government: Safer Businesses and Workplaces.
All of Scotland continues to be ‘Beyond Level 0’, but the Scottish Government retain the option of putting in place local measures and travel restrictions to manage any future virus outbreaks.
Whilst these changes will signal the end of most restrictions for sport and physical activity it will not however signal the end of the epidemic. Covid-19 is a disease that will need to be managed for the foreseeable future and to maintain progress in returning to more normality, it is important that people continue to abide by a set of baseline measures covered by Scottish Government guidance and where relevant legislation. This includes:
- Good hand hygiene and surface cleaning.
- Continued promotion of good ventilation.
- Requirement for face coverings in certain settings (e.g., public transport, retail).
- Continued compliance with Test and Protect, including self-isolation when necessary.
- Ongoing need for outbreak management capability, including active surveillance
The information outlined below summarises the key areas which will change as we move ‘Beyond Level 0’.
- It is the responsibility of each club committee, sports facility operator and/or event organiser (herein referred to as the operator) to ensure that full risk assessments, processes and mitigating actions continue to be applied before any sport or leisure activity takes place and to check if the activity is in an area which is subject to additional Scottish Government localised measures and restrictions.
- Where a local outbreak has been reported, sport and physical activity operators, in all settings, should review their risk assessment and consider if additional mitigating actions should be put in place to reduce risk. This may, for example, include suspending activity, enhancing hygiene and physical distancing measures, or introducing additional activity restrictions.
- Scottish Government may update or change Levels and restrictions at any time, including local areas subject to them. Therefore, COVID officers should regularly check Coronavirus (COVID-19): Local Protection Levels.
- ‘Beyond Level 0’ no travel restrictions will be applicable, within or between areas in Scotland, which are not categorised under the protection level system. Please refer to the Travel Guidance section within the Return to Sport Guidance for further information on where restrictions will apply should a local area move into protection levels.
- Scottish Government are also continuing to monitor the UK wide and International Covid-19 position. Further information on restrictions applicable between Scotland and other parts of the UK and internationally is available on the Scottish Government website at Coronavirus (COVID-19): travel and transport.
Health, Safety & Hygiene
- High levels of personal hygiene and respiratory etiquette will remain essential as we move Beyond Level 0.
- Operators should continue to follow Scottish Government guidance on health, safety and hygiene measures including face covering advice.
Test & Protect
To manage a safe return to organised sport all clubs, facility operators and event organisers should have in place Test & Protect procedures to help break chains of transmission of Coronavirus (COVID19). People who are symptomatic or identified as close contacts should follow Scottish Government and NHS guidance on self-isolation available at Scottish Government: Test & Protect. No one who is self-isolating should attend a sports facility or activity.
- Operators should continue to maintain customer records - all riders, officials and coaches must sign-on when taking part in an event
Competition & Events
- Organised sporting competition and events can take place ‘Beyond Level 0’ but should continue to follow all appropriate guidance. ‘Beyond Level 0’ there are no limits on spectator numbers, subject to organisers obtaining relevant permissions, where they normally would be required to do so. However, operators/ organisers should follow Scottish Government’s Coronavirus (COVID-19): Certification Scheme - Information for Businesses and Event Organisers where attendance thresholds are met. A COVID vaccine certificate or a record of a recent negative COVID-19 test result (from either a Lateral Flow Device or PCR) is needed for:
o indoor events (unseated) with 500 or more people
o outdoor events (unseated) with 4,000 or more people
o any event with 10,000 or more people
- Other bodies depending on the type, location, and scale of the event, may include the landowner, Community Council, the transport police, or other body responsible for the safety of the public.
- Where a competition/event requires a licence from a Local Authority under existing Civic Government legislation, this must include agreement from local Environmental Health Officers.
- There is now a requirement for indoor and outdoor events with attendances of more than 1,000 people to check the certification status of at least 50% of attendees or 1,000 people, whichever is higher.
- Sports facility operators providing catering or bar services should refer to Scottish Government guidance for applicable guidance including takeaway services. Coronavirus (COVID-19): tourism and hospitality sector guidance.
- Retail units operated by sports facility operators should follow Scottish Government Retail Sector Guidance.