Coronavirus: County council to discuss new closure powers

NEW powers to help Staffordshire County Council stop the spread of coronavirus are set to be implemented next week.

The powers, under the new Health Protection Regulations, could see the county council impose restrictions on a wide range of businesses, including [LK(1] pubs and licensed premises, who aren’t doing enough to stop the spread of Covid-19.

In extreme cases, the county council could close a business if it feels not enough steps are being taken to keep people safe.

The new powers apply to premises, events, and even open spaces. Closure notices will only be issued as a last resort, and any decision will be reviewed after seven days.

Before any decision is made, the county council, along with district and borough partners and the police, will be doing everything they can to advise and support premises on the measures needed to stop the spread of Covid-19.

The county council’s cabinet will discuss how these new powers, which are available to all councils during the pandemic, will be implemented in Staffordshire.

Dr Johnny McMahon, cabinet Member for Health, Care and Wellbeing said: “Everyone has a part to play in halting the spread of Covid-19. Whilst the vast majority of businesses are complying with the guidance, we have been made aware of a number of premises that aren’t following it, and potentially putting the people who use them at risk.

"This paper details how we are stepping up our powers to ensure businesses, premises and events are following the guidance to keep people safe. Any potential closure will be a last resort—we will continue to work with businesses to help them comply with the regulations, but the safety of the public has to come first.”

The new powers will be discussed at a meeting of the county council’s Cabinet on August 19.


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