Coronavirus (COVID-19): local authority directions

Guidance for local authorities on giving directions relating to specified premises, events and public outdoor places in response to threats posed by COVID-19.

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Local authorities should designate officials for enforcement purposes.  These local authority designated officers should include  officers who are appropriately trained and qualified for undertaking some form of enforcement action, including but not limited to, Environment Heath Officers (EHOs) and Trading Standards Officers.

Local authority designated officers may take such action as is necessary to enforce a direction. They may give a prohibition notice to a person if the officer reasonably believes that a person is contravening a direction, and that it is necessary and proportionate to give the prohibition notice for the purpose of preventing that person from continuing to do so.

Constables may also take such action as is necessary to enforce a direction. They have enforcement powers under regulation 11.

Offences and fixed penalty notices

Regulation 12 sets out various offences. A person who contravenes a direction commits an offence. It is a defence to a charge of committing an offence to show that the person, in the circumstances, had a reasonable excuse. An offence is punishable on summary conviction by a fine not exceeding the statutory maximum.

Regulation 13 provides that a constable may issue a fixed penalty notice to anyone that the constable reasonably believes has committed an offence under the Regulations and is aged 18 or over.



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