The Scottish Government has been urged to publish its pandemic projections after families across the nation were told to prepare for a “digital Christmas”.
Opposition politicians demanded answers after National Clinical Director Jason Leitch told the BBC’s Good Morning Scotland radio programme that ongoing restrictions would end hopes of a normal festive period.
The Scottish Government adviser said it would be “fiction” to expect anything else, when he was asked about preparations for Christmas this morning.
“It’s honestly too early to say. I’m worried firstly about Halloween and November 5, and then we may turn our minds to Christmas,” he said.
“I’m hopeful cost now may get us a more family Christmas, but Christmas is not going to be normal, there is absolutely no question about that.
“We are not going to be in large family groupings with multiple families coming round – that is fiction for this year.
“But I’m hopeful that if we can get the numbers down to a certain level that we may be able to get some form of normality, but people should get their digital Christmas ready.”
Did the ‘circuit breaker’ lockdown come too late?
In the summer the Scottish Government led us to believe Scotland was close to eliminating coronavirus and people dared to hope.
If it needs to be this way, let’s act now to ensure no one is excluded from “digital Christmas.” https://t.co/XoEavHXglo
— Monica Lennon (@MonicaLennon7) October 22, 2020
Reacting to the remarks, Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie said: “People have made huge sacrifices for months on end, they will be devastated to hear that Christmas as they know it is cancelled this year.
“Many will rightly question whether the government have used the past six months as well as they could have to expand testing, shore up our NHS and prepare for a second wave.
“If the government expects months more of sacrifices it needs to be honest with the public – Nicola Sturgeon must release the data and projections underpinning these proposals and allow the public to debate them openly.”