Keeping Dumfries and Galloway in level 2 restrictions for another week, despite falling Covid cases, makes a mockery of the whole tier system, according to South Scotland MSP Colin Smyth.

The outcome of the weekly review of Scotland’s Covid-19 restriction was announced in the Scottish Parliament by the First Minister on Tuesday who confirmed that Dumfries and Galloway would stay at level 2 for another week. She told parliament that in the coming weeks it would be decided if the region would move down to level 1 but because of its proximity to higher level areas, it would remain at level 2 for now.

This is despite the fact the region is level 1 in three of the Scottish Government’s own five indicators and level 0 in another two.

Colin Smyth said: “Based on its own criteria, the Scottish Government should be moving Dumfries and Galloway in level 1 this week, failing to do so makes a mockery of the whole tier system.

“People in our region have worked hard to follow tough restrictions and now they will be left wondering what more they can possibly do to see a move down to level 1.

“Everyone is well aware of the dangers of Covid-19 and that with a vaccine still not confirmed yet, they cannot become complacent.

“However, my constituents are losing faith in the Scottish Government, which says one thing and then does another.

“Once again, our region is suffering because the Scottish Government failed to get the virus under control in the central belt, in particular our proximity to Lanarkshire and Ayrshire which have been moved into level 4 Covid restrictions. This is completely unacceptable.

“Keeping our region in a higher level than it should will have a devastating impact on local businesses at a time our high streets and hospitality sector are on its knees. The Government must now urgently increase support to protect jobs before the unemployment crisis gets even worse.”

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