Council enforces business restrictions during Covid-19 lockdown

In agreement with Police Scotland and HSE, Aberdeenshire Council has confirmed it will be enforcing restrictions on business operations during the Covid-19 lockdown.

In agreement with Police Scotland and HSE, Aberdeenshire Council has confirmed it will be enforcing restrictions on business operations during the Covid-19 lockdown.

These restrictions will be enforced by council officers in Trading Standards and Environmental Health. Businesses identified to be in breach of the Regulations shall be based on the “4 E’s” process: Engagement, Explanation, Encouragement, and only as a last resort, Enforcement.

A Prohibition Notice will be issued by the Council to any business that fails to comply with the restrictions placed on their operation voluntarily. Aberdeenshire Council is working with other local authorities to ensure the regulations can be applied consistently.

Police Scotland will also continue to enforce restrictions on movement and gatherings.

Cllr Jim Gifford, Leader of Aberdeenshire Council, said

As the lockdown continues into its fourth week, the Council implores businesses to follow Government Regulations and restrict their operating hours if necessary. While we would prefer not to issue prohibition notices, we will not hesitate to take appropriate action in the interest of public health and safety.

Thank you to all individuals and businesses who have demonstrated their patience and complied with the Government guidelines during this ongoing crisis. I would also like to commend the remarkable efforts of all the frontline staff who are working diligently to deliver our essential services.

The Government has not required all businesses to shut but have advised that “All businesses that are not required by law to close should look critically at their role and operations.”

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Only some non-essential shops and public venues have been told to close. These have been listed under The Health Protection (Coronavirus) (Restrictions) (Scotland) Regulations 2020. This places restrictions on business operations, as well as movements and gatherings. Below is a list of the businesses that must close.

Where businesses or organisations continue to operate, employees should be encouraged to work from home unless it is impossible for them to do so. As not everyone can work from home: certain jobs require people to travel to, from and for their work – for instance to operate machinery, work in construction or manufacturing, or to deliver front line services.

Where businesses stay open, they must:

  • take all reasonable steps to ensure a distance of two metres is maintained between any person on the premises except by members of the same household or by carers and the person in receipt of the care (i.e. ‘social distancing’ measures);
  • take all reasonable steps to ensure it only admits sufficiently small numbers of persons to be able to maintain social distancing measures in the premises;
  • take all reasonable steps to ensure that social distancing measures are maintained by any persons waiting to enter its premises.

The closure will last until the expiry of the Regulations, or until direction is given by Scottish Ministers.

The email address for reporting concerns or to seek advice is environmental@aberdeenshire.gov.uk

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