Shetland MSP and Scottish Liberal Democrat Beatrice Wishart has today welcomed the launch of a new Distance Aware Scheme and called for its greater availability. The Scheme provides those who are worried about Covid-19 with badges and lanyards. The badges display a yellow shield, indicating the wearer would like others to give them extra space.
Free Distance Aware badges and lanyards are available from public libraries and Asda supermarkets. Ms Wishart highlighted the challenges this creates for people in Shetland, with no Asda and many people throughout Scotland living on islands without a permanent library. She submitted a Parliamentary Question to enquire whether the Scottish Government will make the Badges available for collection in local retail community shops.
Ms Wishart believes people in rural and island communities should have equal access to the scheme. Though Distance Aware badges can be ordered online, there is a postal fee.
Commenting on the launch of the scheme, Ms Wishart said:
“I am pleased to see the launch of the Distance Aware Scheme. As pandemic restrictions ease, many people are understandably still nervous about the risk of Covid-19. I urge everyone to familiarise themselves with the Distance Aware badges and to make sure to give wearers a bit of extra space.
“The scheme is aimed at those who are at high risk from Covid-19, or who are nervous about increased mixing in-person. The pandemic is still very much with us, and it is important that we are all considerate of others as we increase face-to-face activities.
“I call on the Scottish Government to make the Distance Aware badges available in local community shops, to ensure everyone has easy access to free badges and lanyards in their local area.”
Notes to editors:
More info on the Distance Aware Scheme can be found here: Coronavirus (COVID-19): distance aware scheme - gov.scot (www.gov.scot)
The text of Ms Wishart’s submitted Parliamentary Question is as follows: To ask the Scottish Government what consideration it has given to making Distance Aware badges and Lateral Flow Tests available for collection in local retail community shops in rural, remote and island areas?