Teams of coronavirus rules enforcers are being created across south Wales to crack down on people and businesses who don’t comply with the restrictions.
The teams, made up of police and council officers, will take action against individuals, businesses and licensed premises which blatantly fail to comply with the regulations or repeatedly breach them.
South Wales Police and the seven local authorities in south Wales have established Joint Enforcement Teams (JET) to continue supporting the collective effort to slow the spread of coronavirus.
Chief Superintendent Andy Valentine, who is leading the South Wales Police response to Covid-19, said: “Throughout this pandemic we have adopted a policing style of explaining the rules, encouraging people to comply with them and only using enforcement as a last resort.
“That will continue and although we have been given additional powers by Welsh Government and the establishment of Joint Enforcement Teams we will continue to ensure that our approach to enforcement is proportionate.
“But our message to people and businesses who continue to flout the rules is clear: You need to do the right thing to stop the spread of coronavirus in our communities and if you show a blatant disregard for the rules then you should expect the police or our partner agencies to take enforcement action.”
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In the Neath Port Talbot Council area, visits by the JET team this past weekend resulted in two improvement notices being issued to venues that were not in compliance.
Cllr Neil Moore, leader of the Vale of Glamorgan Counci, said the vast majority of residents in the Vale of Glamorgan had followed the rules carefully.
However, in situations where people were continuously and deliberately breaking the rules, the public could be assured that they would take “more serious action”, he said.
“Unfortunately, there is a minority that refuse to show the same responsible attitude and their selfish and reckless behaviour threatens to undermine the efforts of everyone else,” he added.
“Where issues relating to compliance surface, our officers will always seek to work with individuals, businesses and licensed premises wherever possible.”
Leader of Cardiff Council, Cllr Huw Thomas said that although licensed premises made a significant contribution to the economy, bars and pubs in particular were a cause for concern if customers were not following the guidelines on numbers and social distancing.
All leaders made it clear that if regulations were not met then enforcement action would be taken.
-- to www.walesonline.co.uk