UK Govt Suggests Police Made Up Rule Against Selling ‘Non-Essential’ Easter Eggs

easter
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The British government has suggested that police forces have made up rules against convenience stores selling Easter eggs because they are “non-essential”.

Police officers and council bureaucrats have reportedly been interfering with newsagents and other small convenience stores — but not supermarkets, seemingly — for selling Easter eggs during the coronavirus pandemic, on the grounds that they are “non-essential goods”.

This “heavy-handed” approach has caused dismay and irritation among industry representatives, with The Association of Convenience Stores (ACS) arguing that “There is no government definition of which products can be sold within… stores” and complaining that “In the cases where officers have challenged retailers and shoppers in this way, it’s brought confusion, distracted retailers in the busiest weeks of their lives and increased the interactions between people at a time when the government is trying to minimise them.”

The government now appears to have come down on the side of the retailers, with a spokesman for 10 Downing Street saying: “We have set out which shops can remain open, if a shop is allowed to stay open then it will of course sell whatever items it has in stock.”

The spokesman went on to fudge this statement, however, adding: “The [coronavirus] regulation signed by the Health Secretary last week set out what the government’s clear instruction to the public is and that is what we have asked the police to enforce. Having asked the police to do that job as is usual we would expect them to exercise their own discretion over how they use their powers.”

It is therefore unclear whether the government will intervene to prevent the police from, it would seem, inventing rules on what convenience stores are allowed to sell to their customers, despite indicating their disapproval.

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