Figures for the numbers of fixed penalty notices issued by the Police for breaches of the guidance on COVID-19 were published this week and they show that broadly, the system is working, in that:
- People are adhering to the guidance;
- Police interaction with the public has meant compliance; and
- Fixed penalties are being used as a last resort.
With just over 3200 being issued by all Police Forces, and only 53 here in Kent, I believe that this is so far a positive picture.
I am meeting (virtually) with the Chief Constable on a regular basis to discuss the situation in Kent to make sure his Officers, Staff and volunteers have the kit they need to keep them safe, that the public can have confidence in the policing response to COVID-19 and that victims of crime continue to receive a good service.
Our meetings this week have also included discussions on domestic abuse, commercial burglary, illegal encampments, demand, COVID-19 breach reports, staff welfare and absence, court technology and custody visiting. In addition to this, I have raised issues on behalf of residents at a local level when they have been brought to my attention by residents, MPs and councillors.
And my team continues to monitor demand on victims services and community safety programmes.
I have also this week been involved with meetings with the Secretary of State for Justice and the Policing Minister to discuss national issues – which may have a local impact – and chaired a Board meeting of BlueLight Commercial, which has been assisting with the efforts to secure protective equipment for Police Forces across the country.