Members of the public are now being advised that they can exercise while the stay-at-home order remains in effect.
However, Police Commissioner Gary Griffith is advising against exercising in groups.
“If one or two persons are jogging or walking together, that is okay,” Griffith told Guardian Media during a walk-through of the Chaguanas Market yesterday.
Griffith, who only returned to the field yesterday following a 14-day self-isolation, said he was particularly concerned that the public continued to disregard social distancing protocols.
Pointing to a line of eager consumers waiting to enter the market, Griffith said, “Many institutions such as markets, banks and supermarkets are adhering to social distancing by making sure a specific number of persons will be inside the facility, but the persons on the outside now put themselves at risk because they all stay converged and cramped up.”
He had a few recommendations for owners/operators of businesses where the public needs to line up to access their facilities.
“If you can’t afford or cannot get cones, you can use chalk to draw markers six feet apart so persons can use that a guide to move forward,” Griffith said.
Admitting that social distancing protocols were being reinforced inside but not outside many places, he said, “It becomes the responsibility of the business owner or the corporation to do the same. That responsibility is not just inside the facility, it must be outside because we cannot have persons converging in large numbers like this.”
The CoP appealed to people to apply a new way of thinking.
“Any person in front or behind you could very well be infected and if that is the case, would you be so close to the person and the answer is no,” he said.
Although Griffith was in self-isolation following his return from Miami two weeks ago, he said he was still heavily involved in planning for the increased security measures which will take effect at midnight today.
“The TTPS will now be at the forefront so we have a lot of work to do. We would be seeing shortcomings but we want to assure the public there is not going to be a repeat of what we saw during the last state of emergency,” he said.
“The TTPS is not going to be high-handed. We are going to operate within our authority. If regulations have been enacted, we are going to make sure persons adhere to the regulations.”
He encouraged the public to listen to and follow the regulations, as he said the TTPS will not be exercising the powers of arrest unless absolutely necessary. However, he warned this was not a free pass for the criminal elements to misbehave without repercussions.
He explained that as more and more people are arrested/detained, there would be a greater possibility that someone with the virus could enter the prison system and pass it on further.
Referring to the raising of the police alert level from yellow to orange, Griffith said this meant that 85 emergency response patrol vehicles were now on the roster as the TTPS increased visibility, reducing the number of officers conducting administrative duties and ensuring a senior officer is informed every time someone is held so a detailed analysis can be done.