Police in Cumbria have been out in communities, speaking to people, providing guidance and monitoring the situation across the county following the announcement of new measures on social distancing.
Maintaining the best service to the public, protecting officers and staff and supporting the nationwide response to the outbreak in line with the Government strategy remain our top priorities.
Among the actions being taken in the last day include:
· Foot patrols to monitor the situation in our communities, with officers giving advice where necessary, particularly in respect of gatherings.
· Advice provided to motorists in line with the Government strategy.
· Visits to licensed premises to ensure they are abiding by the measures.
The measures are:
· People MUST stay at home, except for very limited purposes.
· Non-essential shops and community spaces must close.
· All gatherings of more than two people in public will be stopped.
More details can be found on the Government website here: https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus
Assistant Chief Constable Andrew Slattery is the chairman of the Cumbria Local Resilience Forum.
“These new measures are there to save lives and protect our loved ones.
“We are all in this together – so please follow the advice to stay at home and help us to help the national effort.
“Our officers have been out in our communities since the Prime Minister’s announcement, engaging safely with people and giving out guidance - and the majority of people seem to be complying.
“The traffic on the roads is down significantly and our streets and town centres are noticeably quieter.
“We’d like to thank people for thinking of others in this national emergency and doing their part to protect our superb NHS staff and those most vulnerable in the community.
“On the occasions we have found non-compliance, people have been given advice on the Government guidelines to ensure that they comply in future.
“This visible presence is also intended to act as a deterrent to anybody out there who might try to exploit this situation to commit crime.”
ACC Slattery added: “We would urge people to respect and follow all the measures put in place and to remember they are there to keep us all safe.
“Respect rules such as those put in at shops to maintain social distancing and the times set aside for our NHS staff, who are working their hardest to tackle this outbreak.
“We are daily issuing advice on emerging issues such as online fraud and we would like to remind people we are still here to support anyone that is a victim of domestic abuse.”
He added: “This is an unprecedented public health emergency and we expect everyone to comply with the measures as part of the national effort to fight this virus. This isn’t a time to look for loopholes in the guidance or try to justify carrying on as normal. We ask that people understand that complying with these measures will save lives, contravening them puts lives at risk – it should be an easy choice to make."