Police Law Blog European Decisions Statutory Materials

Legislation and guidance – what is in force

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The Coronavirus Act 2020.

The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (England) Regulations 2020


College of Policing latest frontline policing updates.

College of Policing Guidance on the Coronavirus Act 2020: police working with health professionals to make people safer and save lives.

College of Policing and National Police Chiefs Guidance on policing the pandemic – possible Bank Holiday weekend issues

Crown Prosecution Service, College of Policing and National Police Chiefs Council Guidance on what constitutes a reasonable excuse to leave the place where you live.

Guidance on Further Premises to Close

Guidance on taking all reasonable measures to maintain physical distancing in the workplace (Wales)

The lawfulness of the Coronavirus Restrictions Legislation imposing ‘Lockdown’

The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (England) Regulations 2020 and the similar (but not identical) regulations made in the other 3 nations of the UK (together, “the ‘Lockdown’ Regulations”) have been suggested by some to be unlawful (being ultra vires their parent statute) insofar as they purport to criminalise all those leaving the places where they are living, as opposed to merely those who may be infected. This blog examines the main arguments and explains the legal consequences if those arguments are right.

Guidance to Appropriate Authorities: police misconduct hearings during the coronavirus restrictions

  1. This note is intended to assist Appropriate Authorities (“AAs”), Professional Standards Departments (“PSDs”) and hearings units to progress misconduct proceedings[1] under the Police (Conduct) Regulations 2012 and 2020 (“PCR”), during the outbreak of COVID-19. We suggest that AAs should try to proceed with hearings by video and/or telephone where possible, and we explore the practical implications of doing so.

  2. What follows are simply our suggestions. They carry no legal authority. We have endeavoured to keep this document brief and to avoid duplication of other more general or analogous guidance.[2] Any person concerned with misconduct procedures should keep track of the general position in respect of the COVID-19 outbreak and the advice from HM Government at https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus.

Joggergate: How frequently is it necessary to exercise in Wales?

For those wishing to exercise their exercise rights, the new Coronavirus regulations treat English and Welsh joggers rather differently.

Regulation 6 of The Health Protection (Coronavirus Restrictions) (England) Regulations 2020 states that, “During the emergency period, no person may leave the place where they are living without reasonable excuse.” A reasonable excuse includes, under Reg.6(2), the need “to take exercise either alone or with other members of their household.”

By contrast, Regulation 8(2) of The Health Protection (Coronavirus Restrictions) (Wales) Regulations 2020 states that a reasonable excuse includes the need, “to take exercise, no more than once a day, either alone or with other members of the household.” [emphasis added]

The reason for this difference in treatment is unclear. It seems unlikely that the challenging Welsh topography explains why an exercise session is to be regarded as so much more exhausting than it might be on the English lowland plains. It might be suggested that, even in England, there is no ‘need’ to go out of the house to exercise more than once a day. This may be debatable, for example when issues of mental health are taken into account.

These differences in drafting demonstrate how challenging a job it will be for the police to encourage and enforce compliance with the new restrictions, while remaining understanding of the challenges that people face, and adhering to the hallowed principle of policing by consent.

Coronavirus Lockdown: Police Powers? What Police Powers?

No one reading this blog will have failed to notice that yesterday evening, the Prime Minister announced a series of measures which some are referring to as “lockdown”. The full text of the announcement can be found here.

It is also clear that the enforcement many of these will involve the police. However, the basis or extent of these powers has not been made clear. For example, in relation to the announcement that the government is “stopping all public gatherings of more than two people” it has been said that the police will have the power both to fine people and to disperse such gatherings. The announcement does not make clear: