“This announcement has caused confusion among councils who need urgent clarity from the Government on any extra resources and details on how it should work on the ground."
Responding to further information about the government announcement on the introduction of new COVID-19 Secure Marshals to help councils support social distancing in towns and city centres, Cllr Nesil Caliskan, Chair of the Local Government Association’s Safer and Stronger Communities Board, said:
“This announcement has caused confusion among councils who need urgent clarity from the Government on any extra resources and details on how it should work on the ground.
“It is right that councils will be able to choose whether marshals are the best way to manage COVID-19 risks in their local areas. However, without additional funding to support this proposal, many councils are likely to have to prioritise other activity. Even if marshals were rolled out in great numbers, they will not have enforcement powers so it is important that residents do not expect councils to be able to act when they cannot.
“While we are pleased that the Government has listened to our call to make contact data collection mandatory in hospitality and other premises, we now need urgent clarity on how councils will be able to act on businesses flouting rules and what the Government’s expectations are on marshals, so that councils can decide whether they are the best option for their areas.”