‘A great result but won’t give peace of mind’

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WE know that a small number of career criminals are responsible for a disproportionate amount of offending on Edinburgh’s streets.

These hardcore offenders make life a misery for their victims, ruining their peace of mind every bit as much as they steal their property.

Today’s news of a spike in housebreakings in parts of the Capital has to be understood in that context.

When certain prolific criminals are released from the end of a prison sentence, for instance, the impact on their local communities in a relatively safe city like Edinburgh can be dramatic.

In this case, detectives are confident that the action of one individual is largely responsible for the recent significant rise in break-ins.

All the police can do in situations like this is to remorselessly target individuals whenever they appear on the city’s streets.

This time, they appear to have scored a great result, but that won’t guarantee peace of mind for householders.

The police have done their job, now the courts have to do their bit – and send out a message to other 
repeat offenders.

The threat of a community service order, fine or having to wear a tag is not going to put them off pursuing their “chosen profession” one little bit. Knowing that they are certain to be locked up – and locked up for a long time – just might.

And, even if it does not put them off, at least we can sleep safer in our beds knowing they have been take off the streets.

Healthy respect

for as long as there have been hospitals there have been gripes about the inedible food, the bedside manner of some doctors and the length of time some patients have to wait to be seen.

The results of the latest patient survey certainly highlight some issues that the health board needs to tackle. Complaints about patients being left to organise their own transport, for instance, appear to be a particular and persistent concern. This may seem to be a relatively small issue to some, but there is no doub that it can be the source of great anxiety.

Overall, our hospitals can be proud of the fact that an overwhelming majority of patients were positive about their stay and the care they received from the NHS.

Many NHS Lothian staff have had to put up with the most trying of circumstances at work in recent times and yet their hard work and professional dedication still tends to come shining through.