‘We must all play our part’, urges crime commissioner

THE Police and Crime Commissioner for Surrey, David Munro, has stressed that public co-operation remains vital as COVID-19 restrictions are increased.

“We must all continue to play our part,” Mr Munro said.

COMMUNITY SPIRIT – David Munro has urged residents to play their part in halting the spread of the coronavirus

Fines for breaching restrictions have doubled to £200 and pubs, bars and restaurants must close at 10pm as part of the stricter measures to combat the spread of the virus.

Surrey Police have so far been successfully following the “four E” approach: Engage; Explain; Encourage; Enforce.

Officers will try to engage with someone, explain how they are breaking the rules, and encourage them to change their behaviour to reduce the risk to public safety and health.

If people still do not follow the rules, police can order them to disperse, tell parents to stop their children breaking the rule or issue a fine. Should someone continue to ignore the instructions, the police can arrest them if officers think it is proportionate and necessary.

Mr Munro said: “The force will remain steadfast in its ‘Four E’ approach to dealing with anyone breaching the rules.

“I believe this approach remains the right one but that small minority who continue to flout the restrictions and put others at risk should expect to face the full force of the powers available to officers.

“There will undoubtedly be an extra strain on resources over the coming weeks and months but Surrey Police are well prepared and will continue to work together with our partners and the county’s residents during this difficult time.

“Nobody wants to see tighter restrictions on our way of life but we are at a critical stage where the number of cases is starting to rise again. We must all play our part and take personal responsibility in trying halt the spread of the virus and avoid another complete lockdown.

“So far the response of the vast majority of the Surrey public has been excellent and I repeat my thanks to them for their continued support and discipline in sticking to the rules.

“That ongoing co-operation will be absolutely key to making sure our officers can do their job and police by consent over the coming weeks.”

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