A guide for retailers which provides advice on how non-food establishments can make their premises safe for customers and staff in the coronavirus crisis has been published.

The guide, published by the Scottish Retail Consortium in association with USDAW, has been backed by a number of MSPs, including Highlands and Islands Conservative MSP Donald Cameron who supported a motion submitted by Labour's deputy leader Jackie Baillie MSP to the Scottish Parliament.

Mr Cameron said: “The retail sector makes an invaluable contribution to the economy of the Highlands and Islands and I am therefore very pleased to endorse this guide which provides very useful advice to shop managers on how to keep themselves, their staff and their customers safe.

“It is becoming clear that there will be no early end to social distancing and as more shops re-open we will have to continue to take great care in how we conduct ourselves when out shopping.

“This publication is very timely and I am sure will make a useful contribution to helping us adjust to the new retail environment.”

The motion by Jackie Baillie, Dumbarton, Scottish Labour, states: "That the Parliament welcomes the publication of Social Distancing: A Guide for Retailers on how to implement Government advice by the Scottish Retail Consortium in association with USDAW; notes that it includes detailed implementation practices for non-food retail stores to help them operate safely and protect staff and customers as and when there is a government-easing of the COVID-19 lockdown, which permits more trading; understands that it draws on the industry’s existing guide for retail warehouses and the experience of pharmacy, pet food and grocery retailers during this crisis, which has shown that is possible to operate safely and responsibly in this new environment, regardless of the size of premises, and commends this guide to the wider retail industry and other customer-facing sectors of Scotland’s economy as they prepare to get the economy moving again."

Meanwhile, Jackie Baillie will also act as Labour’s finance spokesperson at Holyrood, party leader Richard Leonard has announced.

Ms Baillie has also been given responsibility as Campaign Co-ordinator for the Scottish Parliament elections in 2021 with political oversight of party organisation, reporting to Richard Leonard. She will also be working with Labour Councillors on the Local government elections for 2022, she will work closely with the General Secretary across all areas of party activity, including external engagement, resourcing and candidate selection.

Meanwhile, Highlands and Islands MSP David Stewart is leaving Scottish Labour’s shadow cabinet. His role as spokesperson on the eradication of poverty and inequality will be taken up by Rhoda Grant, who moves from the finance brief. n“I would like to thank Dave for his service in my shadow cabinet, and I look forward to working with him in the future,” Mr Leonard added. “I would also like to thank Rhoda for her work in the finance brief, especially in responding to the recent Budget and playing a major role in securing free bus travel for under-19s. I know she will build on that work in her new portfolio.”