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ukactive has issued the following statement in response to the announcement by Scotland’s First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, introducing new COVID-19 restrictions

Huw Edwards, CEO of ukactive, said: “We are deeply concerned to hear that gyms and leisure facilities will be forced to closed again in a number of areas in Scotland under the new Level 4 regulations announced today by the First Minister.

“We recognise the challenging decisions the Scottish Government has to make during this pandemic but our evidence shows that closing the fitness and leisure sector will only serve to exacerbate health issues and inequalities in our communities.

“Gyms and leisure facilities should be classified as a safe and essential service, and permitted to remain open in order to play their role in maintaining people’s physical and mental health in the face of this crisis.

The data we have collected from more than 1,900 sites across the UK shows our sector is undertaking the highest levels of reporting and controlling cases of COVID-19 among customers, which have been limited thanks to the highest standards of cleanliness, social distancing and safety.

“ukactive remains in regular contact with the Scottish Government and local authorities, in order to provide the best possible evidence to inform decisions about the sector.

“We are committed to supporting our members in Scotland throughout this challenging time and to working with the Government to ensure our members receive the tailored financial and regulatory support required for their survival and recovery.”

For a list of the affected areas in Scotland, please click here