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Distance Aware scheme, launched by the Bevan Commission and the Scottish Government, hopes to help Scots with Covid Anxiety

By Abbie Duncan

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A NEW initiative from the Scottish Government and the Bevan Commission hopes to help alleviate anxieties around going out in public during the pandemic.

The distance aware scheme, a voluntary initiative launched by the Scottish Government, provides a way to inform others of an increased need for social distancing.

Distance Aware Badges are available to all members of the public.
Distance Aware Badges are available to all members of the public.

Research by the Welsh health care group in August 2020 determined that 73 percent of people at higher risk from Covid-19 wanted a way to signal their need for extra vigilance others.

From Wednesday January 26, free badges and lanyards with a distinctive shield symbol will be available under the scheme for all members of the public.

Health Secretary Humza Yousaf said: “We are beginning to adapt to living with Covid-19 but we know that, for some people who have been at higher risk or feel anxious about going out in public, this is a big step.

“This scheme not only provides vital reassurance to anyone who chooses to wear a badge or lanyard, but also encourages us all to be more aware and considerate of those around us – as we simply don’t know their circumstances or concerns.

“I hope this will help people feel more confident and comfortable to go about their daily lives. The shield symbol can be worn by anyone.”

The Scottish Government hopes the campaign will help those fearful of leaving their homes re-engage with social activities.

The badges and lanyards are from all libraries and Asda stores in Scotland from January 26 and can also be ordered from the Scottish Government website for a small postal fee.

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