Scottish election 2021: Lib Dems pledge mental health support in workplaces – BBC

The Scottish Liberal Democrats have committed to help provide mental health first aiders for every workplace to help tackle the mental health crisis.

At an election campaign stop in Edinburgh, party leader Willie Rennie said adults regularly waited up to two years for mental health treatment.

This delay had a “huge personal cost” for those affected and employers lost working days to mental health, he said.

The party called for training for mental health first aiders to restart.

In February, the Scottish parliament officially recognised there was a mental health crisis in the country following a Holyrood debate brought by the Liberal Democrats.

Mr Rennie said training for both new mental health first aiders and instructors by Public Health Scotland had been suspended during the pandemic, unlike in England where training switched to a virtual classroom.

Scottish election: Labour claim Nicola Sturgeon is ‘out of ideas’ as they blast SNP high street pledge – The Sun

LABOUR blasted Nicola Sturgeon as “out of ideas”, after accusing the SNP of making a retail investment pledge containing just one per cent of new money.

They said the £275million announced by the SNP had already been included in last year’s programme and the extra aid to high streets amounted to only £10million.

Party deputy Jackie Baillie said: “Scotland’s businesses and high streets have been devastated by coronavirus.

“But all the SNP is willing to offer them next term is a measly £10million extra.

“After 14 years in government and seven years as the First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon is clearly out of ideas.

Fraud cops probe SNP over £600,000 of indyref 2 funds after claims cash was ‘diverted’ – Daily Record

Police are investigating claims of a £600,000 SNP fraud in a shock blow to Nicola Sturgeon’s ­election campaign.

It is alleged that money raised by activists to prepare for another independence ­referendum has been diverted.

Three members of the party’s Finance and Audit Committee resigned two weeks ago after the First Minister’s husband and party CEO Peter Murrell refused to show them accounts.

Police Scotland said: “We received an allegation of fraud at about 4.40pm on Thursday, March 25, 2021.

“Inquiries are ­ongoing and at an early stage.”

The investigation was triggered by a ­complaint from ­independence activist Sean Clerkin.

Economic case against Scottish independence ‘even more stark’ than in 2014, says Douglas Ross – Edinburgh Evening News

Mr Ross commented while on the campaign trail in Moray, and ahead of his visit to Edinburgh on Monday – in the run-up to the Holyrood election on May 6.

Analysis from the Financial Times published today has determined that a major deterioration in Scotland’s fiscal position since the independence referendum in 2014 suggests it will face a persistent deficit of nearly 10 per cent of gross domestic product (GDP) if it leaves the UK by the middle of this decade.

The newspaper added that the nation has seen its budget deficit widened by lower-than-expected tax revenues, Brexit and the coronavirus crisis – and reducing its GDP deficit from about 10 per cent to a “manageable” 3 per cent would require raising taxes or slashing public spending annually by the equivalent of £1,765 per person in the period after exiting the UK.