Moray MP Douglas Ross is to contact the local council and the Scottish Government to raise concerns on behalf of local beauty salon businesses after a virtual meeting today (Friday).
Operators from across the Moray area took part in the online event, which was also attended by representatives from Moray College (UHI) and the British Association of Beauty Therapy and Cosmetology.
Local business owners shared their concerns about what they believed to be a lack of clarity on the guidelines for what treatments are and are not permitted due to ongoing Coronavirus restrictions.
Increased costs for equipment, a reduction in income due to restrictions and the knock-on effect of event cancellations and hospitality closures were all raised as issues to be addressed.
In response, Mr Ross said he will contact Moray Council to ensure that there is absolute clarity on new restrictions following the announcement of the Scottish Government’s new tiered system.
The Scottish Conservative MP pledged to contact the Scottish Government to specifically ask about apparent anomalies in the rules between hairdressers and beauty therapists regarding mobile visits to homes. The Scottish Government will also be asked to provide hard scientific evidence behind the current guidelines and any further restrictions imposed.
Finally, Mr Ross will raise with the government the issue of financial support for the sector to help businesses that are struggling.
Scottish Conservative MP for Moray Douglas Ross said:
“I am grateful to everybody who took part in today’s virtual meeting to discuss some of the challenges facing beauty salon operators here in Moray, we had a wide ranging and really useful discussion.
“One thing that came across was the need for clarity on restrictions - both those already in place and on any applied in the future in terms of what practices are and are not permitted.
“There was a sense of frustration that measures that have been put in place were not backed up publicly available scientific evidence, and I think it is only right that businesses are given access to that data.
“There are other issues around some anomalies in terms of what beauty therapists and hairdressers can and cannot do at present.
“And finally, given the increased costs of equipment and the substantial loss of income due to restrictions, I will explore what additional financial support might be made available.
“I have promised to keep these businesses informed of any updates I get on these issues so we can support these great local businesses as much as possible.
"They all want to work, and they want to get on with growing their businesses, like those in many other sectors of our economy that are experiencing significant difficulties right now.”