Saturday, 18 July 2020

Additional Public Health Regulations for England

The law is stated as at 18 July 2020. Amendment is likely.
 
The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (England) (No. 3) Regulations 2020 - (SI 2020/750) - are now in force and apply to England only.

The No.3 Regulations are in addition to The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (No. 2) (England) Regulations 2020 (SI 2020/684) which were amended by the The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (No. 2) (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2020 (SI 2020/719).

Regulations
specific to Leicester also remain in force.

Regulations requiring face coverings on public transport continue in force.

Basis in law for the Regulations:

The No 3 Regulations are made under powers in the Public Health (Control of Disease) Act 1984.

Section 45R of the 1984 Act permits the Minister to make Regulations if he is "of the opinion that, by reason of urgency, it is necessary to make" the Regulations "without a draft having been laid before, and approved by a resolution of, each House of Parliament." It is debatable whether the situation is now such that this particular regulation-making power should continue to be used. 

The No.3 Regulations:

See the Explanatory Memorandum.

The No 3 Regulations give Local Authorities powers relating to the control and prevention of coronavirus. They can be used if there is a serious and imminent threat to public health. Any direction issued must be necessary and proportionate to prevent, protect against, control or provide a public health response to the incidence or spread of coronavirus in the local authority’s area. Under regulation 2(4), the local authority must first have regard to advice given by its director of public health (or its interim or acting director of public health), before determining whether to give a direction under Regulation 4 (Directions relating to individual premises), Regulation 5 (Directions relating to events), or Regulation 6 (Directions relating to public outdoor spaces).

Regulation 4 sets out the powers to give directions relating to the closure of, or limiting access to, individual premises. Under this regulation, a local authority may impose prohibitions, requirements or restrictions in relation to the entry and exit from, or location of people within, specified premises in its area
.
Regulation 5 gives local authorities the power to give directions in relation to events in their area. It allows for a local authority to impose prohibitions, requirements or restrictions in relation to the holding of a specified event or events of a specified description.

Regulation 6 provides a power for a local authority to close public outdoor places, or prohibit or restrict access to public outdoor places at specified times. The regulation gives a local authority power to issue a direction imposing prohibitions, requirements or restrictions in relation to a specific public outdoor place or public outdoor places of a specified description.

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