Gloucestershire’s Chief Constable and Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) have made a joint appeal to the public to abide by the Government’s social distancing rules and stay at home this Easter.
With less than 24 hours to go to the first Bank Holiday weekend of the year, Chief Constable Rod Hansen told PCC Martin Surl it was ‘vitally important’ people in Gloucestershire avoid the temptation to break the current lockdown.
The appeal was made in the first of a new series of video webcasts in which the PCC put Coronavirus-related questions from the public to the county’s senior police officer.
Mr. Hansen said, “We’re coming up to the Easter holiday; the weather looks fine; children are getting less homework and I understand the temptation to go out and visit other parts of our stunning county.
“Unless your journey is essential, please don’t go because we will be out in force, as we were last weekend, and there is a very high likelihood you will be turned around”.
The two men who run Gloucestershire Police hold weekly meetings in which Mr. Surl acts as a voice for the public – posing questions on operational policing matters and impartially holding the Chief Constable to account for the actions of the police in Gloucestershire.
As the Covid-19 pandemic has intensified and police powers extended, the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner has received a significant number of questions from the public about how policing has changed as a result of the current restrictions.
Very difficult times
For transparency and to keep the public informed, the PCC and the Chief Constable agreed to record these meetings in the form of a video which will be broadcast on both the OPCC and Constabulary’s websites and social media channels.
Mr. Surl said, “I have been very impressed, and reassured, by the way Gloucestershire Police have carried out their duties during these very difficult times.
“But an important part of my role is holding the Chief Constable to account and as the public are not privy to the information I receive, I am happy to put some of their questions for them.
“To ensure we followed the strict social distancing guidelines, the Chief Constable and I conducted our meeting from different buildings with many miles between us. The process was filmed by colleagues who were more than the requisite two metres away like they do on the television news.
“It was certainly different and I hope the public will find it useful and informative”.
To watch the full video, visit youtube.com/watch?v=H9E3qYdAW7o