Police Commissioner

Stay home. Save lives.

Following the Government’s announcement of new guidance to help tackle Covid-19, the Police and Crime Commissioner for Gwent, Jeff Cuthbert, has praised the response from public services and urged everyone in Gwent to stay at home wherever possible.

Jeff Cuthbert said: “The instruction from the Government is clear. Stay home. Protect the NHS. Save lives.

“These are unprecedented times and we are seeing unprecedented measures; not only to slow the spread of this disease, but to protect the health care system and our communities at large.

“I can’t remember a situation that comes close to the need for caution, tolerance and awareness that we face now.

“Gwent Police, like all police forces across the UK, are awaiting complete clarity on what the new, emergency, legislation will require of them. Hopefully that clarification will be provided within the next 24 hours.

“However, the people of Gwent do not need to be told by the police what they have to do. Both the Prime Minister and the First Minister have made it absolutely clear that if the steps that they’ve outlined are not followed comprehensively then we face a grim situation that will overwhelm the NHS and lead to tragic and unnecessary deaths. Then, we will only have ourselves to blame.

“The police will monitor the situation closely and take steps to deal with those reckless individuals who do not heed the strong advice and emergency laws. We do not want this enforcement to become necessary, but I am speaking with the Chief Constable, Pam Kelly, about how these measures will be enforced should people choose to ignore the absolutely clear advice from government.

“We should expect everybody to obey the law, meaning that enforcement is not needed. Only through mass cultural change can we flatten the curve of this virus’ spread and we all have a role to play in this. This includes listening to and taking action on official advice and guidance from the government and local public sector bodies such as Gwent Police, Public Health Wales and the five Gwent councils.

“I would like to reaffirm my ongoing thanks to all police officers, staff, healthcare workers, local authorities and other partners who are working around the clock to help tackle this.

“We know these are difficult times and I would like to reassure all residents that we are working to do everything we can to help slow the spread of the virus and protect the most vulnerable in society.”

Help is available  If you need support of any kind during these challenging times, even just a chat, there are many organisations who can help.

Live Fear Free  Help and support advice on domestic abuse, sexual violence and other forms of violence and abuse. Phone: 0808 80 10 800

Meic Cymru  Free help and advice for children and young people in Wales. Open 8am until midnight.  Phone: 080880 23456 Text: 84001 Web: www.meiccymru.org

Silver Line Supports older people worried about loneliness and isolation. Open 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. Phone: 0800 470 80 90

Samaritans  On hand day or night, 365 days a year.  Phone (free) 116 123

Chris Latham  Communication & Engagement Officer

Tel: 07970005133 Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner for Gwent Police Headquarters, Croesyceiliog, Cwmbran, NP44 2XJ.

Visit our website for more information: www.gwent.pcc.police.uk

31st March 2020