February 2021: News from Avon & Somerset PCC

January 25 2021

We’re closer to beating the virus, so please don’t flout the lockdown

Sue MountstevensSHORTLY after the New Year, we all received the news we would be entering a third national lockdown. Although unsurprising, I know it was not how we wanted to enter 2021 but, as I’m sure you will agree, the restrictions were and continue to be needed to avoid further harm in our community.
With cases rising to new heights, I welcome the Government’s decision to implement this lockdown to slow the transmission and ensure the NHS can cope. I urge you all to continue to stay at home to protect yourself and your loved ones from this fatal virus.
For those of you who might be frustrated with another lockdown and are tempted to flout the rules, please don’t. We all know how lockdown works, and irresponsible and reckless behaviour will not be tolerated. Avon and Somerset Police and their dedicated COVID-19 team have my full support in responding to breaches of the emergency regulations by engaging, explaining, encouraging and enforcing the law.
We might feel disheartened at the current situation but it is only temporary. With every vaccine administered, we are changing the odds against the virus and are one step closer to beating it. For this reason, please be responsible during the winter months and follow regulations.
For some of you, I know, home is not always a safe place, and as a community we all have a part to play in ensuring our family, friends and neighbours are supported during these difficult times. If you or someone you know is suffering from domestic abuse, please remember that lockdown and isolation rules do not apply. If you need to leave your home because you are worried about your safety, you can. You are not – and never will be – alone.
Young people continue to be further impacted by the pandemic and are now not able to attend school or college. Alongside the difficulties of home learning, young people are more at risk of criminal and sexual exploitation online, and also might be vulnerable to abuse at home. It is our duty to look out for our children and young adults; they might not always recognise the signs of abuse or feel like they can speak up about it – we need to be their voice and offer them much-needed support.
If you are ever concerned for your safety or safety of someone you know, the police and support services are there to help. Please remember you never need to suffer in silence.