People are making what Sussex Police call ‘the right decision’ and staying at home with only a small minority ‘think they are above the law and continue to flout the restrictions’.
Today Sussex Police said officers on patrol across the county on Good Friday reported fewer people out and about, particularly in popular areas such as seafronts, parks and beauty spots.
A spokesman said: “A small minority of people continue to flout the restrictions, and Sussex Police has responded to a number of reports of groups gathering.”
Dispersal orders have been issued in Hastings as well as Crawley, Eastbourne and Seaford in a bid to prevent people from engaging in anti-social behaviour at odds with Government guidance. Officers have also issued firm words of advice after a group travelled from Hemel Hempstead to Beachy Head – a 220 mile round trip – as they heard ‘the view was nice’.
We appreciate the respect and patience shown by the vast majority of people in our communities…
Superintendent Graham Barnett says: “We appreciate the lockdown measures are difficult for everyone – especially at a time when many of us would normally be setting off on holidays or gathering with friends and family – but we are very pleased to see the vast majority of people taking this seriously and listening to the Government guidance to stay at home.
“However, we urge people to continue following the guidance, which includes not meeting up with other people from outside your household to have barbecues or house parties, even if social distancing is observed.
“Unfortunately, a small minority of people think they are above the law and continue to flout the restrictions. A number of these also think it is acceptable to cough and spit at our officers while they are doing their best to play their part in saving lives. This will absolutely not be tolerated and we will take appropriate action against anyone who continues to put lives at risk.
“We will be patrolling our rural and urban communities over the Easter weekend, as well as travel networks across the county. We will continue our approach of engaging with the public we see out and about, explaining why it is important to follow the government guidance. We will encourage people to do the right thing and stay home but if they don’t follow these rules, we will use whatever enforcement is necessary.
“Frontline services in this country are doing an incredible job to slow the spread of the virus, but we need everyone to play their part and help us by staying home and not putting yourself or others at risk.
“The message is clear – stay home, to protect the NHS and save lives. We appreciate the respect and patience shown by the vast majority of people in our communities, but it is absolutely critical that we keep it up. For this to work, everybody needs to do their bit.”