Covid 19: Emergency Worker Protection

April 7th 2020

I along with 15 Kent MPs have signed a letter that has been sent to Kent’s judiciary. The purpose of the cross-party letter is to convey their view that emergency workers deserve protection from those that deliberately cough or spit at emergency workers.

It was with great anger that Kent MP’s learnt of a number of incidents where Kent Police had been both spat at and coughed at by people claiming to have Coronavirus.

Kent Police Chief Constable Alan Pughsley said: "My officers will always place themselves in harm's way to protect the public and in doing so they are sadly and unacceptably assaulted in the lawful execution of their duty. It is not unusual to have up to a dozen officer assaults over a single weekend and a growing number now include being spat at. The personal impact on my staff (and their families) requires months of medical testing and a great deal of anxiety until such tests have been completed. I am saddened that this behaviour is increasing, and I will stop at nothing to bring those disgraceful offenders to justice."

Kent's Police and Crime Commissioner Matthew Scott said: "Kent Police Officers, staff and volunteers are on the frontline every day keeping us safe and protecting people from harm. It's disgusting that there are a few who think it is acceptable to spit at or attack them - and even more so when trying to cause fear by threatening them with covid-19. I hope that the law will be used to protect all emergency services and key workers with long prison sentences for those who attack them."

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