18 June 2021 — Manifesto Club
A new Manifesto Club report is out today, which includes the first ever data on councils’ enforcement of Covid penalties.
Councils issued over £1m in fines to restaurants and pubs for offences such as customers ‘mingling’, tables less than 2m apart, and allowing non-household groups to sit together.
The report, From ASBOs to Covid Wardens, puts covid enforcement in the context of 20 years of councils moving away from public services roles, and towards becoming ‘pseudo-police’.
The report concludes that councils’ new enforcement powers lack basic checks to ensure that they are used fairly and in the public interest.
Finally, it makes recommendations including: the scrutiny and reporting of local authority penalties and orders; the end of ‘pseudo police’ such as covid marshals; and the prohibition of ‘fining for profit’.
director, Manifesto Club