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Housing / Lack of available housing saw police staff member turn down job offer in Lerwick

Photo: Shetland News

A MEETING has heard that a police worker who had accepted a job offer in Lerwick ended up turning it down because they could not find suitable accommodation.

Area commander Stuart Clemenson said the staff member had been lined up to take on a job in the Lerwick Police Station office.

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He told a meeting of Shetland’s community safety and resilience board on Tuesday that the employee already worked for the police in East Kilbride and “ticked all the boxes”.

But four weeks after accepting the job offer, she had to turn it down after failing to find suitable accommodation.

The availability of housing in Shetland has been a big issue for people coming up to the isles for jobs.

This is evident in the number of people who take to social media requesting somewhere to rent when they have work lined up.

The situation with the police employee came in discussions over the opening hours of the Lerwick Police Station front door.

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Board chairman Allison Duncan said described it as a “detrimental situation” that people could not come to the station 24/7.

Clemenson said there had been a national review of opening hours and this resulted in the decision to reduce availability.

At the moment the opening hours in Lerwick are 8am to 6pm, seven days a week.

But Clemenson said locally there are few people who come to the front door – and those who do are mainly to hand over mail or paperwork.

Generally, however, the police chief said he was pleased with local staffing levels, with seven new officers recently heading north.

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