News item

Door is closed on rogue traders in Edinburgh

Picture of a person knocking on a door

 A joint plan between the police and trading standards' officers to target rogue traders has led to consumers in Edinburgh saving nearly £55,000.

The City of Edinburgh Council is one of several local authorities to join a Scotland-wide campaign designed to end the misery caused by con artists who con vulnerable and elderly residents on their doorsteps.

Members of COSLA and Police Scotland this week officially launched the joint campaign, which allows them to work together in a bid to stop rogue traders.

In the capital, trading standards' officers and police officers have already saved residents an estimated £55,000. They operate a "memorandum of understanding" which means that each organisation alerts the other when a suspected doorstep crime is taking place.

Community Safety convener Cllr Cammy Day said: "This system works extremely well in attempts to stop these con artists from taking money from residents. Our trading standards team can advise the police over the phone and can also attend households where a suspected crime of this nature has taken place with an officer.

"Our advice is that if you are suspicious about a person who turns up at your door offering work, then do not hand over cash and contact Police Scotland on 101. And never let anyone into your home without valid identification. This type of crime often takes advantage of the most vulnerable people in our society, and will not be tolerated."

Cllr Stephen Hagan, COSLA’s spokesman on the issue, said:  "For far too long, rogue traders have been targeting vulnerable residents, ripping them off for thousands of pounds, under the premise that they need unnecessary work carried out on their homes.  This is totally illegal, completely immoral and we must not allow this to continue any longer.

"Our home should be our sanctuary, where we can feel safe, yet intrusion from a rogue trader can destroy this security in an instant.  It is time to firmly shut the door on rogue traders and tell them that doorstep crime will not be tolerated in Scotland."

Fiona Borland, Media and Communications Officer 

0131 529 7471 

fiona.borland@edinburgh.gov.uk 

www.edinburgh.gov.uk 

DATE: 27 February 2014