Provision of information held by Northumbria Police made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the 'Act')
As you may be aware the purpose of the Act is to allow a general right of access to information held at the time of a request, by a Public Authority (including the Police), subject to certain limitations and exemptions.
I am writing to you under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 to request the below information. Please note that this FoI should supersede any other FoIs that I have in with you on Schedule 21 of the Coronavirus Act, which can now be cancelled. Please also note that when I first asked forces about uses of Schedule 21, several submitted inaccurate figures due to misunderstandings around the Coronavirus Act, confusion with the Public Health Regulations, or miscalculations. I understand how this happened, but wanted to flag to prevent it from happening again.
1. Since the Coronavirus Act came into force on 25 March, how many times between then and 6 July has your force used Schedule 21? Please provide this total figure broken down by date of usage. If you cannot provide the exact date, please provide the week in which the use happened. If that is still not possible, please provide the month.
2. For each incidence of use, please state whether a public health official was consulted before Schedule 21 was employed and/or whether the public health official directed the use (see section 6(1)(c) of Schedule 21).
3. For each incidence of use, please state which power(s) was/were used. This could include the power to:
• Direct a person to go to a place for screening and assessment (Paragraph 7(2)(a) of Schedule 21)
• Remove a person to a place suitable for screening and assessment (Paragraph 7(2)(b) of Schedule 21)
• Enforce a requirement imposed on a person to remain at a place for screening and assessment (Paragraph 9(3) of Schedule 21)
• Keep a person at a place suitable for screening and assessment until such time as a public health officer can exercise their functions (Paragraph 13(2) of Schedule 21)
• Remove a person to a specified place, keep a person at a specified place, or take an absconder into custody and return them to a specified place (Paragraph 16 of Schedule 21)
• Give instructions to a person (Paragraph 20(1) of Schedule 21)
• Use reasonable force in the exercise of a power under Schedule 21 (Paragraph 20(4) of Schedule 21)
• Enter any place for the purpose of exercising a power under Schedule 21 (Paragraph 20(5) of Schedule 21)
4. a) For each incidence of use, please state, to the greatest level of detail you can, what happened after Schedule 21 was used. This could include but is not limited to: person questioned and released with no further action, person detained for public health officer, person sent for screening and assessment, person detained for screening and assessment. Section 14(3) of Schedule 21 provides more information about why Schedule 21 might be used and what the outcomes might be:
• to provide information to the public health officer or any specified person;
• to provide details by which the person may be contacted during a specified period;
• to go for the purposes of further screening and assessment to a specified place suitable for those purposes and do anything that may be required under paragraph 10(1);
• to remain at a specified place (which may be a place suitable for screening and assessment) for a specified period;
• to remain at a specified place in isolation from others for a specified period.
b) If the person was detained, please also provide, where possible, the length of time they were detained for.
5. For each incidence of use, please state whether this resulted in an arrest, a person being charged with an offence, prosecution and/or a conviction.
6. For each incidence of use, please specify the age category of the person or people involved and their ethnicity. If you cannot be this specific, please tell me whether they were under or over 18 and if they were white or BAME.
We have now had the opportunity to fully consider your request and I provide a response for your attention.
Following receipt of your request, searches were conducted with the Corporate Development Department of Northumbria Police. I can confirm that the information you have requested is not held by Northumbria Police.
No information held. There were no offences where Northumbria Police has used Schedule 21 of the Coronavirus Act.