Responses to the Covid crisis have continued to evolve as the impact of the pandemic on businesses, retail and policing has unfolded. Local businesses and police forces are now enforcing Covid restrictions and rules more strongly across the UK.
Two examples of more assertive action involve retailers and police.
Firstly, major retailers such as Tesco, Aldi, Morrisons and M&S are taking a firmer stance on face masks, stating that they will now formally ban customers who enter their stores without masks unless they can show a valid exemption. Secondly, police are adopting a higher profile in checking that members of the public are restricting their personal travel, and are increasingly applying fines for contravention of current government guidelines.
How can Disc help retailers?
Disc can help support retailers to self-manage and enforce Covid-related anti-social behaviour, effectively – and compliantly.
Since June 2020, shoppers must wear face masks in retail premises unless they have a medical exemption or are under 11 years of age. Now, scientists have identified retail environments as hotbeds for the rapid spread of the new super-infectious strain of Covid, and this has triggered the new, firmer attitude of retailers towards wearing masks in store.
With Disc, each retailer can configure the system to suit its own banning policy, for example defining rules about the number of warnings that should be given before a person is banned, or whether offenders should be banned from only the premises where they have been reported, or more widely across other premises operated by the same company.
Disc is used across more than 500 towns and city-centres by local business crime reduction schemes to provide low-level shoplifters with a formal warning and, if they offend again, to formally exclude them from retail premises. Research shows such schemes are effective in reducing re-offending; and the exact same approach, using Disc, can help retailers implement and enforce their new face mask policies. Importantly, data is processed in compliance with GDPR, and the schemes are entirely separate from the police, so there is no recording of data in police files.
How can police use Disc to manage Covid compliance?
Disc is already widely used by police to share Covid-related news and Alerts with local business communities across the country. Now, with an increasing number of forces adopting a much higher profile and firmer strategies for applying lockdown restrictions, they should consider using Disc internally, to keep track of individuals who repeatedly flout the rules.
Currently, as with business Exclusion Schemes throughout the UK, first-time offenders can be formally warned, and their personal data entered into Disc. Thereafter officers can easily identify repeat offenders and subsequently, if appropriate apply the appropriate penalty.
Each Disc system can be configured to reflect the precise policies individual police forces wish to apply. And because Disc sits outside the police’s own existing data systems, any personal data saved into Disc does not feed into police criminal databases, helping to provide the ‘soft touch’ recommended by the National Police Chiefs Council and the College of Policing.
Disc can be accessed through any smartphone using its intuitive App so it is ideally positioned to support officers in the field, whether in a public park, high street, seafront or sports arena.
For more information about Disc for Covid click here, or for a demonstration on how the system can be used for Covid-related crime or ASB fill in our contact form and we will be in touch to arrange a session.