The Met is deploying resources across the capital to help enforce tighter restrictions on social gatherings following changes in the Coronavirus Regulations.
Changes to the regulations that reduce the numbers who can meet socially from 30 to six have been introduced to help control the spread of the virus.
Coronavirus remains a real and deadly threat and officers will be deployed in every borough to help keep people safe. They will patrol public spaces and will also respond swiftly to incidents where groups gather in large numbers.
Officers will continue to adopt the ‘four E’s’ approach by seeking to engage, explain and encourage people to act responsibly and comply with these changes. Where groups fail to comply with police, officers have the powers to issue fixed penalty notices of £100, which doubles for further offences, up to a maximum of £3,200.
DAC Matt Twist, leading the Met’s response to Coronavirus, said: “Coronavirus has had an enormous impact on London and the life of Londoners and my thoughts are with all those who have battled the virus or who have lost loved ones. Our city has made huge sacrifices since the start of lockdown in March and officers across the Met have been working around the clock to keep London safe and support our heroic health colleagues.
“Throughout this period, the vast majority of Londoners have complied with the regulations. Today’s changes are an important step to reduce the spread of the virus and I would urge everyone to take them seriously and comply.
“We will be deploying resources across the capital to engage with groups of more than six to highlight the risks and regulations. Where necessary, officers will enforce the regulations. We will be working closely with the London boroughs and their enforcement teams, and doing all we can to persuade Londoners to take the threat seriously. Where people just won’t listen, and are putting everyone at risk, we absolutely will take enforcement action.
“It is very clear that we cannot control the spread of the virus through enforcement alone, and we need Londoners to work with us. Therefore, please continue to act responsibly – maintain social distancing, respect the new regulations and guidance, and help keep yourself, your friends and family safe.”
There are a number of exemptions to the restrictions on gatherings, these include gatherings for work or educational purposes, funerals or sporting activities. For a list of exemptions, visit https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus.