We’ve all seen the advert of Scotland’s Chief Medical Officer advising the public to “only go out when absolutely necessary for food, medicine, work or exercise. Always stay two metres apart, and do not meet others outside your own household – even friends and family.”
As head of the Scottish Government’s response to the ongoing Coronavirus epidemic, Dr Catherine Calderwood more than anyone should be leading by example and following her own guidelines.
But she hasn’t.
This morning, pictures emerged in The Sun newspaper of Dr Calderwood visiting her family’s second home in Fife with her husband and 3 children, in spite of the ongoing lockdown prohibiting all but essential travel in the UK. At a press conference today, Dr Calderwood admitted to visiting her second home last weekend as well.
Not only has this behaviour put lives at risk in the East Neuk of Fife should any member of her family be carrying the virus, but it also sets a dangerous precedent for people across Scotland following Dr Calderwood’s example.
In response to Dr Calderwood’s actions, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said “All of us, including me, will make mistakes in these unprecedented times we are living in. When we do we must be candid about it and learn from it.” She added, "notwithstanding her mistake on this, she is doing extremely well".
The rules are clear – only go outside if it is absolutely essential for food or medical supplies, to work where this cannot be done remotely, or for up to one hour of exercise a day. Failing to abide by these rules can lead to prosecution, with Dr Calderwood receiving a formal warning from Police Scotland for her conduct.
As the figureheads of Scotland’s response to the Coronavirus, Catherine Calderwood and Nicola Sturgeon have put lives at risk by carrying out and condoning this behaviour.
It is our view that Dr Calderwood should resign as the Chief Medical Officer of Scotland and Nicola Sturgeon must apologise for putting lives at risk in Scotland in her response to Dr Calderwood’s behaviour.
Jackson Carlaw, the leader of the Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party, has said that Dr Calderwood’s position was “very difficult, untenable even, given the damage this has caused to public trust". Adding, "There cannot be one rule for the bosses and another one for everyone else."
Please be sure to abide by the Government's rules on Coronavirus. For more information, please visit our Coronavirus Help Centre: https://www.southayrshireconservatives.org.uk/coronavirus-help-centre
Stay Home, Save Lives.