The Government has ordered that everyone stays at home unless absolutely essential to help prevent the spread of coronavirus.
The City of Wolverhampton Council’s Director of Public Health John Denley said: "Preventing the spread of coronavirus is a national effort which we are all responsible for, and I want to say a huge thank you to everyone who is adhering to the social distancing measures, remaining at home unless absolutely essential and keeping at least two metres away from others when they are out and about.
“However, we’ve seen a steady increase in traffic on local roads over the last fortnight, along with reports of people congregating in open spaces including shopping precincts, and I would like to remind residents not to take any unnecessary trips out of the home at this time.
“Coronavirus will not change its rules – and number of infections, and sadly deaths, could easily spike if we lift the lockdown too soon.”
Chief Superintendent Andy Beard from Wolverhampton Police said: “I would like to thank the vast majority of people in Wolverhampton who continue to act responsibly in line with government restrictions.
“Our officers are patrolling across our city engaging with people, explaining the restrictions and encouraging people to comply, with enforcement being a last resort.”
People must stay at home as much as possible and only leave the house:
- to shop for basic necessities, for example food and medicine, as infrequently as possible
- for one form of exercise a day, for instance a run, walk, or cycle - alone or with members of their household
- for any medical need, or to provide care or to help a vulnerable person
- to travel to and from work, but only where work cannot be done from home, or to take children to and from school if parents are classed as 'critical workers'
When out in public, people must stay 2 metres – or 6 feet – away from other people at all times, unless they are members of the same household.
These measures should be followed by everyone. Separate advice is available for people or households who are isolating, and for the most vulnerable who need to be shielded.
Wolverhampton's parks remain open for exercise, and cemeteries reopened to the public on Sunday. Strict social distancing measures are in place at both locations, and visitors are generally adhering well to the guidelines.
Schools are closed to all pupils except the most vulnerable children and those of ‘critical’ workers, as do all non essential businesses and public spaces. Public gatherings of more than 2 people are banned, except where they are from the same household or where the gathering is essential for work purposes. All social events, including weddings, baptisms and other religious ceremonies, have been stopped. Funerals continue but should only be attended by immediate family members.
Meanwhile, to enable shoppers to keep their distance, retailers which have been permitted to remain open – including supermarkets and corner shops – have been encouraged to place limits on how many people can be in-store at any one time and to ask customers to stand two metres apart when in-store and whilst queuing. In addition, customers are encouraged to pay using contactless to reduce the amount of cash being handled by staff.
Mr Denley added: “Although it is very hard for everyone to keep going with the lockdown rules, we simply must do all we can to stay home – because the more we do this right now, the quicker we can all get back to normal.”
The latest information and guidance around coronavirus is available at GOV.UK and on the council’s own coronavirus pages at Coronavirus advice and information. There’s lots of advice on how people can protect themselves and their families from coronavirus from the NHS.
The council’s Stay Safe, Be Kind campaign offers clear and simple advice about how people can help themselves, and how they can support others who may be particularly vulnerable at this time. For more information, please visit Stay Safe Be Kind.