In the lead up to the UEFA European Football Championships, Suffolk Police are urging football fans to enjoy the matches, behave appropriately and respect others.
Officers want everyone to have an enjoyable time during the postponed UEFA Euro 2020 that kicks off on Friday (11 June) but are reminding supporters to celebrate safely and responsibly.
Chief Inspector Matt Carney says: “After a difficult year with lockdown restrictions and not being able to enjoy social interactions, we understand that many are awaiting the Euros with some anticipation.
“The earlier matches in the tournament take place while some Covid-19 restrictions remain in place, and so we would like to remind everyone to adhere to government guidance.
“The Euros bring joy and anguish, in equal measures, to fans and we encourage everyone to enjoy the tournament but remember to be considerate, mindful and tolerant of others.
“Alcohol combined with emotion and passion can sometimes lead to incidents of antisocial behaviour and violence, and these have real consequences. There is no excuse for abusive behaviour in any setting, so we urge people to act responsibly.
“If you’re going out to watch the matches, whether that’s in a pub or at any other outdoor screening, remember to look out for your friends and ensure you have arranged how you’re getting home.”
Police will be giving extra support to residents and businesses at match times – offering firm but fair and friendly policing. Officers have written to, and have been working with, licensees who intend to show Euro 2020 games in order to maintain the safety of patrons and staff.
However, licensed premises showing Euro games also have the responsibility to do so in a safe and responsible manner without adversely impacting on the enjoyment of their customers and the wider public.
Chief Inspector Carney continues: “We would also warn motorists to think about whether they are safe to drive the morning after drinking. There are some mid-week matches and evening kick offs and people need to be aware that the next morning they may still be over the limit.
“By showing respect and consideration for other football fans and members of the public, and taking responsibility for your own actions, we can all make Euro 2020 memorable for the right reasons.”
The public can be reassured that officers are used to policing major events and, where required, will be patrolling trouble spots.
A number of posters aimed at encouraging people to enjoy the tournament safely and responsibly have been put together. You can download these here.
Tim Passmore, Suffolk Police and Crime Commissioner said, “Watching any sport can be thirsty work and it is perfectly natural to enjoy a pint or two when watching the football. We don’t want to spoil the fun we just want to remind everyone to act responsibly – abusive and irresponsible behaviour is not acceptable.
“After the year we’ve had I hope we are now at a stage where people can get out and enjoy the company of friends and family but let’s all make a concerted effort to be sensible and not spoil this newfound freedom.”
If you see a crime take place, you can report the incident via the website https://www.suffolk.police.uk/contact-us/report-something
Phone – Call 101
Please note in the event of an emergency you should always call 999