Release date: 29 January 2021
West Sussex Trading Standards Service has been working hard to keep residents safe throughout the pandemic.
Since the start of the national lockdown in March 2020, Trading Standards officers have issued 36 notices where business were refusing to comply with COVID-19 regulations.
Businesses found to be non-compliant have included hairdressers, carwashes and retailers. One business has received multiple fines following the involvement of Trading Standards
Officers investigated these businesses after receiving complaints that they were opening illegally or not taking contact details of customers.
By not following these lockdown restrictions, businesses are putting their customers at serious risk.
Peter Aston, West Sussex Trading Standards Team Manager, said: “It is the law for certain businesses to close during the lockdown. The majority of businesses have complied with regulations and I would like to thank everyone who has worked so hard to do so.
“Whilst we do appreciate this is a difficult time for businesses, particularly those who have had to close, not only does breaking the restrictions put customers at risk, it’s not fair to the vast majority of businesses who are complying with the regulations. Our priority is to keep residents safe and I want to send a clear message that we will take action against any business which refuses to follow the law.”
Deborah Urquhart, West Sussex County Council Cabinet Member for Environment, said: “Trading Standards officers have been working incredibly hard throughout the pandemic to ensure businesses comply with COVID-19 restrictions. Unfortunately a small minority of businesses have flouted the rules and officers have needed to take enforcement action.
“I would like to thank all of those businesses who have complied with the regulations throughout. It is absolutely vital we all continue to comply with the restrictions and work together to prevent the spread of COVID-19.”
Under current lockdown restrictions, hospitality venues such as pubs, restaurants and coffee shops must close to the public other than for takeaways.
Businesses required to close include clothing stores, gyms, hair beauty and nail salons, nightclubs, theatres and museums.
There is a wide range of support available for businesses.
Anyone who looking to report an issue to Trading Standards should contact the service via Citizens Advice on 08082231133 or online.
For the latest information about COVID-19, sign up to West Sussex County Council’s e-newsletter.