“Enjoy yourself this Christmas, but wrap up warm.” That’s the message from Nigel Don, MSP for Angus North and Mearns.
“The winter weather has been spectacular, with high winds, rivers in spate, high tides and waves crashing over harbour walls.
“It’s important not to take risks when you’re out and about enjoying yourself.”
Mr Don added: “Our police and other emergency services continue to earn our respect; our doctors, nurses and the other staff in our hospitals continue to attend to our needs, and they will still be on duty whilst we are having our end of year break.
“Let’s not give them too much to do over Christmas and New Year.”
“Presents and parties are fun, but the best thing about Christmas and New Year is having time to spend with your family and friends.
“I live in hope that this year the police will have no family fights to deal with and that burglars will take a holiday too. They should leave people’s Christmas presents alone.
“And I hope that those of us who have family will remember those who are on their own, especially the recently bereaved.
“It’s not always easy to know what to say but simply being alongside those who grieve is a help in itself.
“Looking ahead, I hope the farmers have a better season – this year the weather has been a nightmare and my impression is that climate change is now a real challenge.
“The economic outlook seems little better than before and many families will struggle. Welfare reform, which is another way of saying benefit cuts, will not help.
“We all want to see equality of opportunity, but the gap between rich and poor continues to widen.
“That’s a challenge too, but by supporting charities, volunteering and providing opportunities for young people to get involved, we can all do something to help.
“It’s in difficult times that we discover what kind of society we really are. I trust that we will work together to help our families and communities in 2013, and I wish everyone a guid New Year.”