MSPs have praised the vital ‘frontline’ role of Scotland's 44,000 convenience store staff in supporting communities through the COVID-19 crisis. Senior Scottish Labour MSP Anas Sarwar has lodged a Parliamentary Motion which highlights the outstanding effort convenience stores have made in supporting vulnerable customers. The Motion has been endorsed by MSPs from across the political spectrum at Holyrood.

The Glasgow MSP said,

Shopkeepers in Scotland’s independent convenience stores are the unsung heroes of the coronavirus pandemic. They have worked tirelessly to ensure that vulnerable people are receiving essential groceries and other products, particularly in rural locations where they are often the only shopping option. Shopkeepers in independent stores are at the heart of their communities and are using their local knowledge to make sure vulnerable people are being looked after. When we applaud the key workers who are fighting the coronavirus on the frontline, let’s not forget the shopkeepers.”

The Scottish Local Shop Report shows that almost 2,000 of Scotland’s 5,000 convenience stores are providing lifeline services in rural parts of the country where there are no other nearby shops. Scottish Grocers Federation chief executive Dr Pete Cheema OBE said,

“We are delighted that MSPs from all political parties have recognised the outstanding work being done by convenience retailers in ensuring that customers have access to essential groceries and vital services. More and more people are recognising that convenience stores have become the new emergency service."