As you will be well aware by now, the lockdown in Scotland has been extended. This update was perhaps expected, but I know it would have been disappointing for many people to hear all the same, particularly those who are more vulnerable and isolated from family and friends.
Police Scotland’s Chief Constable Iain Livingstone joined the First Minister Nicola Sturgeon at the daily coronavirus briefing where he urged everyone to stick with the guidance and to stay at home as the restrictions continue in order to protect the NHS and save lives.
Today, on behalf of North East Police Division, I ask you – please – to do the same.
We need everyone to continue to exercise the same self-discipline, commitment and common sense which has, so far, served the country well
As the Chief Constable said, we need everyone to continue to exercise the same self-discipline, commitment and common sense which has, so far, served the country well.
Police Scotland officers and staff are being met by high levels of co-operation, and society as a whole has stepped forward collectively to do its duty despite the challenges we are all facing. We need this to continue though if we are to protect as many people as possible and therefore the guidance to continue to stay at home remains.
We have always taken great pride in the strong relationship we have with our local communities, and of the trust policing has with the public in the North East. Despite the extraordinary powers Police Scotland has been given to help keep people safe, I believe our relationships remains just as strong and I would like to thank you once again for your co-operation, consent and compliance. We continue to value your trust and remain absolutely committed to supporting you as the restrictions continue.
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Officers are continuing to patrol communities across the north-east every day, engaging with people where necessary, explaining the legislation and encouraging them to comply. Only where people continue to defy that very clear advice is enforcement action being used, and it remains absolutely as a last resort.
The crucial role of the police service, particularly at this time, is to support and protect vulnerable people
Officers are also continuing to respond to day-to-day policing demands and our priority remains helping to keep everyone safe. Sadly, for some, I know the stay at home guidance may expose them to a greater risk of abuse, harm and neglect and that private and virtual spaces are not safe places for everyone. The crucial role of the police service, particularly at this time, is to support and protect vulnerable people and we are still here to do just that. If you need help or support, or you know someone who is in need, please come forward and let us know.
Nearly 1,000 cases of coronavirus have been recorded in the Grampian area so far, with a number of people being cared for in intensive care by our NHS colleagues as I write this. My thoughts continue to be with all those affected, and to all those who have lost loved ones as a consequence of this public health emergency.
To help protect the NHS and save lives, it remains crucial that everyone continues to play their part. Please – stay home, stay safe, and follow the guidance.