A local woman has accused police and track and trace of being “heavy-handed” and resorting to “overkill” after a riot van turned up to check whether her 12-year-old daughter was isolating.
The Manchester Evening News has reported that Greater Manchester Police visited the Middleton home of Kathryn Crook on two separate occasions over two days (11 and 12 July) – leaving her daughter “petrified”.
On the first visit, officers apparently refused to speak to Ms Crook and instead asked to see her daughter Charlotte. On the second occasion, an officer arrived in a riot van.
Ms Crook told the MEN: “They [police officers] would not tell me and my husband why they wanted to speak to my daughter. I suggested again that she was only 12 and as her mother, I should be the one they should speak to.
“My daughter by this time was stood behind me crouching thinking she had done something wrong and was petrified.”
Ms Crook – whose daughter Charlotte has been isolating since a positive PCR test on July 4 – has contacted her MP Chris Clarkson over the incident.
She added: “The behaviour of NHS Test and Trace, Rochdale public health officers and GMP has been completely inappropriate and heavy-handed over the whole thing.
“My daughter has been in complete meltdown, thinking she was going to get arrested at any moment.”
A spokesperson for Rochdale Council explained to the MEN that when the national track and trace team is not able to contact someone to confirm isolation, details are passed to councils to be dealt with locally.
The council said it had spoken directly with the family to offer them support.
A GMP spokesperson added: “By working in partnership with the local authority, police officers will then be asked to attend as there has been unanswered calls and a suspected breach to carry out the checks and issue a fixed penalty notice if required.
“Any engagement will be done directly with the person who has been asked to self-isolate.
“In this instance when an officer attended on Monday night we established that the isolation request had been adhered to and the officer was satisfied that the original NHS request had been met.
“These checks are also conducted on welfare grounds as having to self-isolate could impede someone’s ability to get food or essential items so it’s important they are continued in-line with national guidance.”
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