News by email Donate


Top Stories

Most Read

Popular Videos

Photo Credit: UK Parliament
Photo Credit: UK Parliament
Photo Credit: UK Parliament
Photo Credit: UK Parliament
UK News

Christian MP Fiona Bruce joins call for review into 'unclear' lockdown rules

by Tola Mbakwe

Thousands of people are being hit with fines for breaches of coronavirus lockdown regulations that are "unclear and ambiguous," a parliamentary committee has warned

The Joint Committee on Human Rights said it was "unacceptable" that "many thousands" were receiving fixed penalty notices (FPNs) despite evidence the police did not fully understand their powers and with no means of redress.

It said the way the regulations were being enforced by the police was having a "disproportionate impact" on young men from black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds.

Although FPNs could result in fines in excess of £10,000 there is currently no realistic way for people to challenge them.

Christian MP, Fiona Bruce is on the committee. She told Premier that 17,000 people have received an FPN so far and research shows that many of them have been "wrong imposed".  The representative for Congleton said the Government has a lot to clear up.  

"Firstly, we're saying that the regulations need to contain really clear and unambiguous language so that people really do know when they are and when they're not in breach of them. 

"Secondly, we need to be absolutely sure that the police understand their powers. We say in our report, for example, that the police were stopping people and accusing them of breaching the regulations because they were making what were called unnecessary journeys in the cars, when in fact, that was not a breach of the regulations. So it's really important that the police fully understand their powers."

Bruce added that there should be a Government review of how the regulations are being applied and there should be a fair way to challenge the FPNs without having to get a court involved. 

A Government spokesperson said they had worked closely with the police throughout the pandemic, and officers had enforced regulations only as a last resort.

They added: "Both Houses (of Parliament) have opportunities to scrutinise and debate all regulations, which must be approved by both Houses within 28 days to remain in force. This is the same way all lockdown regulations have been made and none have been voted down."

Additional reporting from Press Association

Listen to Premier's interview with Fiona Bruce here: 

Continue the conversation on our Facebook page

A Monthly Gift Of £8 Makes A World Of Difference

In a world of fake news there’s never been a greater need for quality Christian journalism. Premier’s mission is to provide the Church with the most up to date and relevant news, told from a Christian perspective. But we can’t do it without you.

Unlike many websites we haven't put up a paywall — we want to keep our journalism free at the point of need and as open as we can. Premier’s news output takes a lot of time, money and hard work to produce. No one in the UK is sharing news like we are across radio, magazines and online so please help us to continue that today.

For a monthly gift of £8 or more we’d also be able to send you a free copy of the brand new Premier Bible, a wonderful Anglicised version of the NLT packed with exclusive bonus content, reading plan and resources to help you get the most out of scripture.

Your monthly support will make a world of difference. Thank you.

Set up a monthly gift

Related Articles

Sign up to our newsletter to stay informed with news from a Christian perspective.