Coronavirus: SCMA Update (24 March 2020)

Coronavirus: SCMA Update (24 March 2020)
We are aware of the announcement made last night that the UK is to effectively go into lockdown. This means that there should be an immediate stop to public gatherings of more than two people in Scotland in a bid to flatten the curve of Covid-19 spread and protect the NHS, excluding household groups or in a work-related capacity.

From last night the only permissible reasons to leave your home are as follows:- 

· To shop for basic necessities and that should be limited to once a day
· To take exercise once a day - but alone or with your own household, not in groups
· For medical reasons or to care for a vulnerable person
· To travel to essential work if that cannot be done at home. Further guidance to employers is pending.

We were in touch with the Scottish Government last night following this announcement and understand that we will receive communication during today as to what this means for childminding. We appreciate that you will be wanting clear answers now. The reality is that none of us have this at the moment, but this will become clearer during the day.
 
Until official advice is received later, we would suggest that:-

If you normally provide childcare for children of key workers, they need to work today, your setting is open (you and your family do not have symptoms of coronavirus) and both they and you are happy for you to provide childcare for them today please do so.

Work is also continuing behind the scenes to arrange emergency childcare for key workers across Scotland. SCMA will remain in active discussion with Local Authorities regarding this until advised otherwise.

Given the speed with which things have been moving we expect to provide further updates through the day and will do this as soon as more information becomes available.

Graeme McAlister
Chief Executive