The President of REHIS, John Stirling, has written to the Health Minister Andy Kerr (pictured), asking him to take action on the licensing of sunbed parlours. Measures were outlined in a propososed private Members' Bill due to be put to the Scottish Parliament by Ken Macintosh, MSP. However, it now appears that there will be insufficient time for the Bill to proceed before the election in May 2007.
The newly-formed group of environmental health volunteers is due to meet in Edinburgh next week, courtesy of REHIS. EHiDE (Environmental Health in Disasters and Emergencies) was set up in response to recent large-scale natural disasters. There have already been calls for potential volunteers and meetings have been held in Dublin, London and Wigan. This is the first meeting of its kind in Scotland and the intention is to give the attendees a flavour of what they might be letting themselves in for in the event of an emergency.
The Healthyliving Award will give national recognition to those eating establishments which are responding to consumer demand for healthier food. The Award will build on the success of the former Scottish Healthy Choices Award which, introduced 10 years ago, was run for the Scottish Executive by the Scottish Consumer Council.
Consumer groups in Scotland have been keen for some time to see greater transparency of enforcement and compliance with food safety legislation. For more information on 'scores on the doors' read the full news item, as mentioned in Environmental Health Scotland, Volume 18, Number 3.
In the debate about standards of diet among Scottish children, the Institute has highlighted the Food and Health course, which gives advice on providing healthy meals and snacks on a budget.
A new national liaison group has been established to deal with the subject of enforcement of the Smoke-Free initiative, with a meeting having been held in Milngavie, near Glasgow this week. It was attended by Smoking Enforcement Officers, Environmental Health Officers and Managers representing almost all of Scotland's local authorities. The delegates were addressed by Mary Cuthbert of the Scottish Executive's tobacco control unit and by Lisa Buck from Scotland's Health at Work. Evonne Tennant of the host authority, East Dunbartonshire Council chaired.
This legislation was passed by the Parliament on 24 November 2005 and received Royal Assent on 5 January 2006. It builds on and repeals certain sections of the previous Housing (Scotland) Acts (HSAs) and will have a major impact on how Environmental Health Officers deal with sub-standard housing.
The Scottish Executive has issued a series of information letters to local authorities offering guidance on how the new Regulations should be applied. One letter clarifies the position with Private Water Supplies on Dairy Farms. They are classed as a 'commercial activity' and therefore fall to be treated as a Type A supply. For further information go to www.privatewatersupplies.gov.uk
Graduates with environmental health degrees may celebrate their successes, but then find difficulty in finding placements with local authorities. Figures gathered by the Institute show that the lack of training places is not getting any better. See press release
Readers of the Journal of the Royal Environmental Health Institute of Scotland will be aware that an appeal was launched for the above initiative in the Summer edition of 'Environmental Health Scotland'. Full details of the appeal appear here.
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