Council leader urges people to stop flouting health advice

Published: Friday, March 27, 2020

People ignoring the Government’s medical guidance on social distancing are putting their lives and the lives of others at risk, Wandsworth Council leader Ravi Govindia has warned.

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The council is receiving regular reports of people ignoring the two-metre rule - especially in parks and open spaces. Some people have continued to use outdoor gym equipment even though these facilities have been closed and taped off.

The behaviour of a minority of people is fuelling concerns that the rules put in place to combat the spread of Coronavirus are being seriously undermined.

The Government guidance states that everyone should stay at home. People should only go outside for food, health reasons or work (but only if you cannot work from home) and stay two metres (6ft) away from other people.

Wandsworth’s parks police service, working in support of the Metropolitan Police, have stepped up their patrols of the borough’s parks and commons to ensure visitors are abiding by the two-metre rule. They have also had to reinstate tapes and barriers around playgrounds and outdoor gyms and ask people holding picnics and gatherings to move on.

Cllr Govindia said: “I am very grateful to the vast majority of our residents who are complying with the rules on social distancing and behaving responsibly to help prevent the spread of this deadly virus

“However there are some who are acting as though the current health crisis is iust a figment of other people’s imagination and are taking little or no notice of the medical advice to keep their distance and avoid the risk of infecting or contracting this disease.

“I have been frankly amazed that small groups of people are still gathering together in close proximity and putting their lives, and the lives of others at risk. Their behaviour in the midst of a pandemic is totally irresponsible.

“The police are taking action to stop this mindless behaviour so I would urge all residents and businesses to play by the rules and stay safe. These restrictions won’t last forever but the longer people flout the rules, the longer it will take to beat this virus.”