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Highland Council calls for more localised coronavirus figures

By Gavin Musgrove

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Highland Council has backed an urgent motion calling for more detailed local information sharing on Covid-19 for members in local government.

It was brought to today's full council meeting by the leaders of four of the parties in the chamber Margaret Davidson (Independents), Andrew Jarvie (Scottish Conservatives), Alasdair Christie (Scottish Lib Dem) and Jimmy Gray (Scottish Labour).

At present figures are only provided on a regular basis at nationwide, and NHS and local government regional level unless there is a specific cluster as has been the case in Grantown.

The motion backed is as follows: “Throughout the pandemic we have received information on national and Highland wide numbers infected with Covid-19.

"However as powers to implement lockdowns and restrictions are moving to more local areas, we believe we require more localised information.

"We are aware that detailed information is shared on a daily basis with a range of authorities including senior council officers but there are currently restrictions in place about who this is shared with such as with elected members.

"This has a detrimental impact on our ability to plan, make informed decisions, and provide advice and reassurance to our communities.

"This council calls on the First Minister to reconsider the flow of information from the Scottish Government Resilience Rooms to local authorities, and to review the current protocols to enable more timeous and appropriate sharing of information to enable enhanced partnership working with the Scottish Government and resilience partners and, critically, improved local decision-making and representation.”

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