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Contacts From Scottish Public To Charity Crimestoppers Hit Record High During LockdownThumbnail for article : Contacts From Scottish Public To Charity Crimestoppers Hit Record High During Lockdown
Over the past three months, independent charity Crimestoppers has received a record number of reports from the public across Scotland on domestic abuse, drug dealing and child harm and neglect.   In response to lockdown across Scotland, the charity ran a series of public awareness campaigns to highlight the increased risk of harm and abuse some people would experience.  
Serco Northlink Ferries Introduces Pet-friendly Cabins On BoardThumbnail for article : Serco Northlink Ferries Introduces Pet-friendly Cabins On Board
Four-legged friends can now travel with their owners between the Scottish mainland and Orkney and Shetland - thanks to new pet-friendly cabins on NorthLink Ferries passenger vessels MV Hamnavoe, MV Hjaltland and MV Hrossey.   Each ship has two pet-friendly cabins available which have en-suite facilities, side-by-side lower twin bunks and tea and coffee making facilities.  
Inverness Looking Hard At Waste From Camper Vans And Wild Campers - Should Other Areas Join Them?
Ness-side councillor Ron MacWilliam has called for tough new local byelaws to deal with the recent surge in excessive littering, outdoor toileting and motorhome chemical waste tipping.  Reports of inconsiderate waste disposal have flooded in from every corner of the Highlands in recent days and in Inverness locations such as the Merkinch Nature Reserve have also been plagued by the problem.  
Scottish Firms Regain Some Confidence Say Federation Of Small BusinessesThumbnail for article : Scottish Firms Regain Some Confidence Say Federation Of Small Businesses
Small businesses experience a significant boost to confidence across the UK, but overall levels of confidence in Scotland are still below the UK average.   The FSB Scottish Small Business Index (SBI) increased 144.7 points to reach -10.1 in the second quarter of 2020.  
HMRC Urges Parents To Claim Child BenefitThumbnail for article : HMRC Urges Parents To Claim Child Benefit
Parents in Scotland are being urged to claim Child Benefit, even if they have not yet been able to register the birth of their new-borns, to ensure they don't miss out.   Between April and July 2019, HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) received 49,637 more new Child Benefit claims compared to the same period in 2020.  
GMB warns Trumps jobs killer tariffs threaten whisky jobs and economic recovery
GMB Scotland has today (Monday 27 July) warned the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) that Donald Trump's tariff war on whisky will be a "jobs killer" on both sides of the Atlantic and urged the UK Government to "get in the game" and defend the industry.   Responding to the USTR's consultation, Concerning the Enforcement of US WTO Rights in Large Civil Aircraft Dispute, the union for Scotland's whisky and spirits workers said: "On both sides of the Atlantic this tariff war will strangle hopes for economic recovery.  
Events Sector Gets New Funding To Keep Scotland Centre Stage
A funding package of £10 million has been established to help the events sector recover from the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.   Funding streams will be set up to provide direct support to organisers of cultural, community, and sporting events, as well as to supply chain firms facing hardship, to help keep them in business while restrictions on events are still in place.  
Spain Removed From Travel Corridors Exemption List - Self Isolate Again For Two Weeks On Return
Notice issued on 25 July 2020.   If you arrive in England, Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland from Spain on or after 26 July 2020 you will need to self-isolate.  
Nearly 9 In 10 Scots Will Keep Shopping More Online Despite Covid-19 Restrictions Easing
Lockdown has led to Scotland becoming a nation of online shoppers - with millions in Scotland and across the UK planning to continue their digital spending spree despite restrictions being lifted.   In fact, 87% of Scots - nearly 9 in 10 - are planning to shop online at the same level, if not more, as restrictions ease, suggesting that Scots are committed to online shopping for the long haul.  
Highland Council Calls On New Parents To Register Lockdown Births
From 29th June, Highland Council Registration Offices resumed birth registration.   As birth registrations were suspended since late March, The Highland Council's Registrars are now working through a backlog and it is important that they register births in date order wherever possible.  
Ride Free: New Online Motorcycle Training To Improve Road SafetyThumbnail for article : Ride Free: New Online Motorcycle Training To Improve Road Safety
Ride Free is a free online training course that you should complete before taking your moped or motorcycle compulsory basic training (CBT).   The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) has announced the launch of Ride Free - a free online training course that moped and motorcycle riders should complete before taking their CBT course.  
Vital Support For Museums And Galleries -new Fund To Launch
A new funding stream for the independent museums sector to help bolster resilience following the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has been announced by Culture Secretary Fiona Hyslop.   The £4 million Museums Resilience and Recovery Fund will provide support for Scotland's museums and galleries and will be administered by Museums Galleries Scotland (MGS).  
Scotland's Natural Economy Valued At Over £29 Billion Per AnnumThumbnail for article : Scotland's Natural Economy Valued At Over £29 Billion Per Annum
A new report has defined and detailed for the first time the value of the ‘natural economy' to Scotland's overall economic output, finding it represents more than a fifth of the nation's economy.   The natural economy is defined as comprising six sub-sectors that either directly use, rely or contribute to conserving natural resources, namely: tourism, food and drink, fishing and aquaculture, agriculture, energy (including renewables), and forestry, logging and manufacture of wood.  
Excess Weight Can Increase Risk Of Serious Illness And Death From Covid-19
Supporting people to move towards and maintain a healthier weight may reduce the serious effects of COVID-19 on the population, PHE report finds.   Being obese or excessively overweight increases the risk of severe illness and death from COVID-19, a new Public Health England (PHE) report confirms.  
Her Majestys Passport Office Update On Passport Applications
Immediate changes to help those who urgently require a passport to travel.   The necessary public health measures taken to suppress the spread of COVID-19 have had an impact on provision of passport services.  
Quarantine Rules Lifted For Five Countries
Public health measures lifted for more travellers.   Travellers from an additional five countries will no longer need to quarantine for 14 days on arrival in Scotland.  
Retail Sales Claw Back To Normal Levels, But Online Snatches Over 30%
Today's ONS retail statistics for June show retail sales up 1.5% YOY - but ParcelHero warns stores not to celebrate yet: 31.8% of those sales were made online.   The Office of National Statistics (ONS) retail sales figures for June showed sales soared by over 13% compared to May, to reach near-normal levels.  
More Materials To Be Accepted At Household Waste Recycling Centres
The Highland Council announced on Thursday 23 July 2020 additional materials will start to be accepted at many of the Household Waste Recycling Centres (HWRC) across the region and some opening times extended as part of the planned phased reopening.   Wood and scrap metal have now been added to the range of items that are accepted at the majority of facilities where the layout and size of the site allows.  
Tax Credits Deadline: Customers At Risk Of Losing Out
People whose circumstances have changed in the last year or who have received a letter to reconfirm their income details must contact HMRC before 31 July 2020.   Tax credits customers have just one week left to tell HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) about changes to their circumstances or income before the deadline on 31 July 2020.  
Don't get petfished: vets And celebrities lead public warnings Against cruel And Opportunist Lockdown Pet Sellers 
Prospective puppy and kitten owners warned of risks of being ‘Petfished' when buying a pet online following lockdown demand surge.   Vets, charities and animal-loving celebrities have joined forces with a government campaign to warn against unknowingly buying puppies, kittens, cats and dogs from unscrupulous sellers amid a rise in demand for pets since lockdown.