Covid: Deaths rise in East Dunbartonshire and cases remain stubbornly high

East Dunbartonshire may be moved up to level four covid restrictions from Friday as cases remain stubbornly high in the area.

Sadly, the number of deaths up to October 31 according to the latest National Records of Scotland statistics, has risen by 16 to total 155, after remaining at 139 for some time

The total number of positive cases between November 6 and November 12 in the area was 242, according to Public health Scotland.

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First Minister Nicola Sturgeon is tomorrow (Tuesday) expected to give the decision on whether the local authority area would move to Tier 4.

The move would see the closure of gyms, hospitality and non-essential shops.

However, the joint leader of East Dunbartonshire Council says he is “deeply concerned” over a move to the highest level of restrictions.

Conservative Councillor Andrew Polson said: “I can confirm I have been in contact with officials in the Scottish government about the possibility of our area and that of Greater Glasgow going into the highest tier of restrictions.

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“I made my feelings perfectly clear and have urged sev2ere caution.

The impact on the economy has already been seen and the long-term disaster that looms for businesses and people’s livelihoods is immeasurable.

“Notwithstanding the follow on health implications both physically and mentally.”

He added: “Also going into level four seriously increases the probability of our schools having to close and the uncertainty that that would bring for parents and children, 
particularly in the more 
deprived areas.

“Should we not be giving level 3 more time?

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“It is irresponsible of decision makers not to take into account other health harms, inequalities which affect those disadvantaged already, and the severe economic damage that will impact on people losing their jobs and livelihoods.”

His concerns come as teaching union the EIS warned on Monday that industrial action is possible over safety in schools.

The EIS said blended learning should be looked at in any areas of the country that moved to level 4 restrictions and said some schools could have to close completely.

The Scottish government said they were keeping the guidance being implemented in schools under close 

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Larry Flanagan of the EIS said: “There is pupil to pupil transmission within schools and those pupils are going back to their homes and taking the virus back with them.

“So I think whether it is about schools being safe or whether it is schools contributing to a general lockdown to get down community infection levels, there does need to be scope for either blended learning which is part-time education with physical distancing or moving to remote learning for a short period of time to suppress the virus.”

His warning over industrial action comes after a teacher in North Lanarkshire wrote to a national newspaper, describing schools as “a hotbed” of infection.

She added: “A full class can be in front of you one day and then, without any prior warning or explanation, half or more are gone the next.

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“How can this be sustainable for young people who wish to sit exams and pass courses?

“Add into the mix staff positive cases. Multiple teachers have tested positive in my school and others.

“Again, no one is made aware other than through word of mouth or from the staff member themselves.

“Vulnerable support staff are being directly affected by Covid also, testing positive or having to isolate.”

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