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RGP urges public to stick to Covid rules

The Royal Gibraltar Police has appealed for people to adhere to the current lockdown restrictions and not abuse the exemptions for leaving their homes.

The appeal comes after police officers issued 19 fines to people who had left their homes on Friday and Saturday without a lawful reason.

“I am disappointed with the feedback being received regarding continued instances of individuals, including families with children, abusing the exemption allowing physical exercise to congregate at beaches and other popular hotspots for lengthy periods and mixing of households, notwithstanding the continued high infection rate, pressure on frontline services and rising number of deaths,” said Commissioner of Police Richard Ullger.

“Officers are still having to engage large numbers of persons, including families, in relation to their presence at various locations on a daily basis, including 19 fixed penalty notices issued to persons for leaving their place of residence without a lawful purpose on Friday and Saturday alone.”

“This, despite the frequency of Public Health Gibraltar guidance and the many who are in fact complying with the legislation that is aimed principally at protecting our community and in particular, the Gibraltar Health Authority and other frontline services.”

Mr Ullger said the lax attitude of a minority of people towards Covid regulations was creating additional work for police officers who were also dealing with crime and other emergency responses, some involving arrests.

Like other areas of public service, the RGP has also had to respond to a strain on resources as many of its personnel are either recovering from Covid-19 or have been told to self-isolate.

“I therefore ask our community to play their part in this by policing themselves,” Mr Ullger said.

“The RGP acknowledges that the re-introduction of a lockdown is challenging for many, and we take the opportunity to thank everyone who is playing a part to help stop the spread of Covid-19.”

“The RGP will continue engaging, explaining and encouraging the community, which we too form part of, to comply with the restrictions.”

“However, we will continue to ensure robust enforcement action is taken in cases of blatant breaches in public spaces or private premises.”

“Our message is stay at home to protect the GHA and emergency services, and follow the rules not just to avoid a fine, but to avoid the pain and suffering that this virus is already causing within the community, as well as our collective responsibility to keep each other safe.”

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