Candidates give their views on Sabbath

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Over a third of council candidates have responded to a survey carried out by the local branch of Day One (Lord’s Day Observance Society) with the majority being of the view that there is no evidence to suggest whether there have been positive or negative social or economic impacts from Sunday flights and ferries.

The survey asked all candidates four questions about their attitudes and assessment of local issues related to the Sabbath and so far 22 candidates our of the 63 standing have responded.

Ninety one per cent consider the Sabbath-observing tradition of Lewis and Harris to be a positive part of the islands heritage and 68 per cent stated clearly in their responses that the introduction of seven day services such as the opening of Lewis Sports Centre was not a desirable aim for the Comhairle.

One hundred per cent of respondents are of the view that full legal protection should be provided for those workers who do not want to work on Sundays.

Six per cent view Sunday sailings and flights to have brought economic benefits to the islands while 80 per cent are of the view that there is no evidence of social and economic impacts from the start of Sunday flights and ferries.

Commenting on the response, Rev Greg MacDonald said: “We wish sincerely to thank all those who took time and effort responding to our questions. Both the candour and variety of replies received were appreciated. Of particular note is the overwhelmingly positive view of the heritage of our islands regarding the sanctity of the Lord’s Day. Many local Christians look forward to that positive attitude being clearly evidenced within the makeup of the Comhairle after these elections.”