MORAY HAS JOINED a group who are determined to combat the millions of pounds lost by residents each year through a variety of scams.
Moray Council will become a ‘Friends Against Scams’ organisation, with members of the Planning & Regulatory Services committee approving the move on Tuesday morning.
Staff will be trained on how best they can support and advise relatives, friends and neighbours about scams. In the six months to May 31, Moray Council’s Trading Standards received 22 complaints about suspected scam and rogue traders.
Figures suggest that only 5% of victims report these crimes, which indicates almost 900 scam and rogue trade incidents occur each year in Moray. Moray Council is well placed to help in the fight against scams, with customer-facing employees in trading standards, community safety, community care, social work and housing.
Councillor Walter Wilson, chair of the planning committee, said it was important for staff to be able to support those who are, or may become, victims of fraud.
He added: “It’s estimated that that fraud costs every man, woman and child in Moray up to £156 per year. This is unacceptable and as well as financial losses, victims can suffer longer-lasting effects on their health and wellbeing.
“We’re offering our staff the opportunity to take part in free training, which will help them help the most vulnerable in our communities.”
Members of the public and other organisations can become friends, and Moray Council’s Trading Standards Manager, Peter Adamson, encouraged others to join – information is available online.