Staying COVID-19 Secure in the WEA
FIVE STEPS TO SAFER WORKING TOGETHER
Workers’ Educational Association
WEA Scotland recognises the challenges and issues for everyone caused by the Coronavirus. This news section aims to provide updates on the actions WEA Scotland is taking to ensure that: where possible, learners can continue to attend their classes, but at the same time, ensure that all our learners staff tutors, partners; together with their extended families and friends, remain safe and healthy during this pandemic.
The advice and guidance in this section is based on the latest advice and guidance from the Scottish Government. It will be updated regularly as this advice and guidance changes.
Staff and tutors will also receive regular updates from their Line Manager, the Director of WEA Scotland and the Chief Executive of the WEA. These updates will provide some additional advice that will complement the official guidelines from the Scottish Government and NHS outlined below
The latest updates from Scottish Government are posted every day at 2pm. This will include an update on the number of cases and the latest news and advice from the Scottish Government. Click here to access the site.
Further information on the Coronavirus can also be accessed via NHS Inform: click here.
There is also a telephone line for help and advice on 0800 028 2816.
Finally, Health Protection Scotland also has a collection of advice information and resources: click here.
From everyone at the WEA please stay safe and follow the Government guidelines, updated below. Please see a video message from our CEO Simon Parkinson below.
The coronavirus guidance in Scotland differs to the guidance provided in England. Please see the updated Coronavirus FAQs for Scotland below.
Q. Can people meet more than one person at a time from other households?
A. From 19 June, one household can meet up with people from another two households outside. You can meet these two households together or separately and it doesn’t always have to be the same households - but it should be no more than two at a time and no more than two in a day. And we are still advising no more than eight in any group. This has to be outdoors, in a public area or in one household’s garden. You must follow physical distancing guidance and hygiene rules.
Q. Are people allowed to travel to meet friends and family outside?
A. It is acceptable to travel outside your local area to meet members of another household in an outdoor space such as a private garden, but you should use your judgement about how far to travel.
Q. Can I have friends or family visit in my garden?
A. Up to three households can meet in a garden with up to a recommended maximum of eight people at once. Physical distancing should be followed between households at all times. We know that some people will only have access to their back garden through their house, so in this case, if friends or family are coming round to spend time in your garden, they can go through your house but must not touch anything and should go straight to the garden.
Q. Will visitors be able to use my bathroom?
A. Yes. If members of another household are going to visit you and need to use your toilet, you should ensure appropriate cleaning materials are available. You should also provide either a hand towel for each visiting household or paper towels and a safe disposal option.
Q. Are picnics, BBQs and sunbathing allowed with other people?
A. No more than three households are allowed to meet outdoors at the same time. That can be a picnic, BBQ or to sit out in the sun. The most important things to remember when you’re outdoors, even with friends and family, is to stay 2 metres apart and follow hygiene rules at all times.
Food and drink shouldn’t be shared between households. Each household should bring its own food separately and avoid sharing utensils, dishes or cups and use a hand sanitiser before eating.
Q. When will people be allowed to visit immediate family at home?
A. At the moment, you can meet family outdoors, for example in a garden, but you should not go inside another house other than your own, even if it belongs to a family member except to quickly access the garden.
The only exemption to this rule is if you’re giving support to a vulnerable family member – but please follow the physical distancing advice on how to do this safely.
Q. What about those who live with an individual who is shielding, are they allowed to do more activity/meet other households?
A. People who are shielding are advised to continue to do so until at least the end of July. However, from 19 June, those advised to shield will be able to take part in non-contact activities, such as golf, angling, kayaking, and meet members of another household outdoors, up to a suggested maximum of eight in the group. Most importantly in both instances, strict physical distancing of 2 metres must be followed at all times, and they should wash their hands for at least 20 seconds when they return home.
If you are living with someone who is shielding, you do need to be aware of the potential risks to them if you have been exposed to the virus. You should support them in shielding by following the guidance on physical distancing, and good hand hygiene.~
Q. What about an individual who is shielding, what changes apply to them?
A. People who are shielding are advised to continue to do so until at least the end of July. However, from 19 June, those advised to shield will be able to take part in non-contact activities such as golf, angling, kayaking, and meet members of another household outdoors, up to a suggested maximum of eight in the group. Most importantly in both instances, strict physical distancing of two metres must be followed at all times, and they should wash their hands for at least 20 seconds when they return home.
Q. Should people still be working from home if they can?
A. Everyone who can work from home should continue to do so. Any change to that advice will be guided by scientific evidence. Non-essential workplaces should remain closed until the relevant Phase in the Route Map. Even if your workplace is open, if you are able to work from home then please continue to do so.
Q. Do I have to wear a face covering?
A. From 22 June, face coverings are mandatory on public transport. It will apply to all passengers and staff in public areas, although there will be exemptions especially for those who are not able to wear a face covering for specific medical reasons. Children under five will also be exempt. We will of course keep this position under regular review to reflect any new evidence that becomes available.
Q. What if I need to use public transport to get to work?
A. Non-essential workplaces should remain closed until the relevant Phase in the route map. Even if your workplace is open, if you are able to work from home please continue to do so.
As more workplaces open, consistent with the route map, we know there will be more need for people to move around. We’re working with transport operators, unions and passengers groups to make public transport as safe as possible for employees and passengers, but there are things you can do to keep yourself safe.
Q. How far are people allowed to travel by car?
A. We have relaxed the 5 mile guidance on travel for leisure purposes, other than in a specific part of Dumfries and Galloway. Please stay local as much as possible for goods, services and activities and avoid crowded places where physical distancing may be difficult.
Q. When will shops reopen?
A. All street-access retail and outdoor markets can reopen with physical distancing, and subject to relevant guidance. The wearing of face coverings for customers in shops will become mandatory from 10 July. For staff, many will also have to wear masks when customers are in the shop unless there are other protective measures in place such as Perspex screens.
Q. When can pubs and restaurants reopen?
A. Outdoor hospitality, such as pavement cafes and beer gardens, will re-open from Monday 6 July where 2 metre distancing will remain in place for now.
Q. When will schools reopen?
A. Teachers and other school staff may now return to schools to make arrangements for a new way forward and the new term is due to begin on 11 August 2020, with a combination of teaching in school and home learning. We will review the position on schools as part of the regular review of COVID-19 restrictions with a view to enabling as much face to face teaching time as possible.
Q. How have you determined which sports are safe to restart?
From 29 May 2020, unrestricted outdoor exercise and some non-contact outdoor activities within your local area – such as golf, outdoor tennis and angling – can resume provided physical distancing is followed. It does not mean that taking part will always be safe. You should use judgement and take part only if you can do so safely, maintaining physical distancing and not putting yourself or others, such as rescue services, at risk.
From 29 June, outdoor sports courts can open, participants must maintain strict physical distancing at all times when using outdoor sports courts.
Q. In Scotland, do I have to self-isolate for 14 days if I’ve been abroad?
A. As of 8 June, it is a requirement for residents and visitors entering the UK from abroad to self-isolate for 14 days. This will be reviewed after three weeks. Everyone should follow the latest Government advice and only travel when and where it is essential.
For more information and guidance in Scotland please click here.