Communities must work together to combat Coronavirus spread

The Police and Crime Commissioner for Surrey David Munro is calling on communities to work together with the police following last night’s government announcement of further restrictive measures to combat Coronavirus.

The PCC says residents must play their part in following the direction to stay at home to help halt the spread of the virus and keep people safe.

Police and local authorities are set to be given extra powers under new legislation to disperse gatherings and issue fines to those not co-operating.

Surrey Police are working with the government through the national police body to consider how these new rules can be most effectively enforced and to draw up guidance for officers on the ground.

The PCC has offered any support his office can provide which includes making around £500,000 available from the PCC’s operational reserve to provide additional help where needed to those essential support services funded by his office who have been affected by the outbreak.

These organisations provide direct support to some of our most vulnerable residents and victims of crimes such as serious sexual offences, child abuse and domestic abuse. During this difficult time, they have adapted how they deliver their support, using telephone and video calls for instance, and are very much still there for anyone who needs their help.

PCC David Munro said: “These are extraordinary times which will continue to stretch our health and emergency services to the absolute limit in their efforts to keep us safe from the Coronavirus outbreak.

“I know this is a period of great uncertainty for many communities across the county. The disruption to every-day life is unprecedented but absolutely necessary to slow the spread of this virus and save lives.

“That is why I would ask everyone to work with us, follow the latest government guidance to the full and stay at home.

“The Surrey Local Resilience Forum (LRF) moved to major incident footing in the county last week and Surrey Police have been working around the clock with our partner agencies to respond to what has been a rapidly changing situation.

“I have been in regular contact with the Force’s senior leaders over the last few weeks and have offered any support that my office can provide to help the evolving battle against this virus.

“As you would expect, the police together with those other agencies have well-rehearsed contingency and major incident plans in place. But it is worth reminding everyone that our emergency services, and of course our wonderful health service, are facing significant pressure at this time in dealing with this pandemic.

“I would like to take this opportunity to thank each and every one of them for the professionalism and selflessness they have shown in such demanding and difficult circumstances.

“Our communities will look to the police to provide a reassuring presence and we will do everything we can to provide that support, particularly to the most vulnerable in our society. Surrey Police will continue to be there for you if you need them and will continue to do everything possible to support the national response to this pandemic and keep people safe.”

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