Falkirk area mental health charity issues 'still here' message prior to easing of Covid restrictions
Falkirk and District Association for Mental Health (FDAMH) has sent a message of support to the public ahead of the accelerated easing of coronavirus restrictions on travelling in Scotland.
The organisation knows the early lifting of the ban, which comes into effect from Friday, will be welcomed by many.
But it is also aware, for some, the transition back into society from lockdown will pose difficulties.
The Scottish Government announced this week the restriction on travel on the mainland would be relaxed earlier than planned to help people’s mental health.
As of Friday, members of the public will be allowed to meet outdoors in groups of up to six adults from six households.
Under the new guidance, people will also be permitted to travel across the country to do so, as long as they do not stay overnight.
Further restrictions are expected to be eased from April 26, with shops, gyms, bars and restaurants due to reopen on a restricted basis.
Hospitality businesses will have to close their doors at 8pm indoors and 10pm outside, with alcohol only allowed to be served outdoors.
By then, groups of six people from six different households will be allowed to meet in outdoor hospitality.
Restrictions on travel from Scotland to other UK areas are also expected to be eased from April 26.
Responding to the latest Holyrood announcement, Ian Dickson, FDAMH chief executive officer, said: “Lockdown restrictions have continued to have an impact on mental well-being over the past year, with associated lifestyle changes resulting in everybody having to adapt from what was previously considered normal.
“At FDAMH, we have observed both positive and negative impacts from all of the significant changes to lockdown guidelines, dependant on individual circumstances.
“Easing of restrictions can offer new opportunities for people to spend more quality time with friends and family and perhaps return to school or their place of work, helping reduce loneliness and isolation.
“Conversely, this can also increase levels of anxiety, as we leave the relative safety of our homes and reintegrate back into the wider community.
“FDAMH continues to be here to support the Falkirk district community through this period of change.”