The first minister says people should listen to the Scottish Government – and not Westminster – when it comes to guidelines on how to behave in lockdown.
Nicola Sturgeon changed advice on face coverings north of the border earlier this week, to recommend that people wear a non-medical-grade mask or covering when in crowded public spaces like shops or public transport.
The UK Government has not made that recommendation, saying that the evidence for their effectiveness is “weak”.
It has led to some concerns over mixed messaging from the two governments, which have been working together thus far to set rules and offer advice on how to deal with coronavirus.
But in an interview with Wave FM, Ms Sturgeon said: “On this issue, it’s the Scottish Government that you should look to for guidance. For people in Scotland, that is us within this area, because health is a devolved matter that has the responsibility to give that guidance.
“There isn’t a confused message in that respect. I don’t think the prime minister is saying to people in Scotland don’t wear face coverings, he’s just, at this stage, choosing not to give that same guidance that we have to people in England.
“It’s not that the two governments are saying something different to people in Scotland. The message to people in Scotland is clear, it’s unequivocal, and nobody is contradicting it.”
Ms Sturgeon has previously said she will make decisions in Scotland’s best interests, but will not go a different way to Boris Johnson for political reasons.
She has also confirmed that there will be no lifting of a full lockdown – “or anything remotely like it” – when rules are reviewed across the UK next week.