Police column: Control your dogs near livestock
The recent cold snap reminds us that there are still a few months left until we welcome in the spring and the arrival of lambs in our fields.
That means our local farmers have a lot of pregnant livestock in their fields at the moment and, sadly, we have had several reports of sheep worrying in recent weeks, with two reported at the same farm in the East Fortune area.
These have resulted in the death of sheep, which is devastating for the farmers involved as well as causing significant economic loss.
Please ensure that you keep your dog on a lead whilst walking in or near fields or open land where there may be sheep or other livestock. Livestock worrying is a criminal offence and causes significant animal suffering.
On a more positive note, our Police Scotland Youth Volunteers (PSYVs) visited the Scottish Police College in Kincardine last Saturday, where all police officers in Scotland complete their initial training.
Whilst there, they attended a cyber awareness event to help them keep themselves safe online, which is vital as so many of our young people live a large part of their lives online.
I include my teenage son who, at times, appears surgically attached to his smartphone, even when purportedly ‘studying’ for his Nat 5s.
The PSYVs also received certificates recognising them as peer educators for ‘No Knives, better lives’, which is a national programme aimed at supporting our young people to make positive choices in life, recognising that those who carry knives are at risk of themselves being victims of knife crime and of reducing their opportunities both as young people and throughout their adult life.
Our PSYVs are approaching the end of their 12-week training programme and I look forward to their passing out parade next month, as well as seeing them out and about in the community supporting local events and policing priorities.
We would like to increase the numbers of PSYVs but to do that we desperately need more adult volunteers.
If you want to support local young people in growing to their full potential whilst giving something back to the community, and are able to give up a few hours on a Friday afternoon, please check our social media for how you can apply.
Finally, I am delighted that we now have all six local leisure centres signed up as ‘Keep Safe’ places where vulnerable people can seek support or assistance when out in the community.
We already have a number of local businesses signed up to this national scheme and hope to have about 40 signed up by the end of February.
You can find out further information about this charity on the ‘I Am Me Scotland’ website (iam mescotland.co.uk) and you can also download the KeepSafe app to your mobile phone.
East Lothian Courier
By Chief Inspector Jocelyn O’Connor