Emergency COVID19 laws to halt evictions and secure justice system are unveiled

Emergency laws to deal with the impact of Coronavirus in Scotland have been published by the Scottish Government.

Emergency laws to deal with the impact of Coronavirus in Scotland have been published by the Scottish Government.

They will bar evictions of tenants from their homes during the pandemic and ensure the justice system continues to operate with many trials having been suspended.

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Constitution secretary Michael Russell

Constitution Secretary Michael Russell today said the measures in the Coronavirus (Scotland) Bill won't be in place any longer than necessary.

"The Bill has quite a number of provisions in it," Mr Russell said during Scottish Government's daily Coronavirus update in Edinburgh.

"For many people the provision that means there's no possibility of people not being evicted for not paying rent is central to the Bill. People require to be safe in their homes.

“The bill also deals with a range of issues in the criminal justice system where it absolutely essential that we have the provisions necessary to continue the administration of justice.

"And the Bill tackles some relatively small but important issues where we have to ensure that the business of Government continues even if people cannot meet and cannot meet together to do certain things."

It is expected that the emergency legislation will be passed at all three stages in a single day at Holyrood tomorrow.

Further emergency legislation is likely to be published in the coming weeks, Mr Russell added. The emergency legislation is renewable only twice at six monthly intervals, but Mr Russell said today this will not happen unless it is needed.

"We want to make sure they are no longer in place just at the moment they are not needed - they are needed now," he added.

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