A MEMBER of the public has criticised the council after some of its workers were snapped seemingly breaching social distancing guidelines by embracing one another, despite its own signs warning against such contact.

A shopper caught on camera the moment a group of Bucks Council employees flung their arms around each other, seemingly in breach of the current advice.

The scene happened in Buckingham Street, Aylesbury, on Monday (April 12), they said.

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A group of five council workers wearing hi-vis jackets can be seen standing close together, and one member throws their arm around another.

None appear to be wearing face coverings.

Bucks Free Press:

PICTURED: The group on Buckingham Street in Aylesbury

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The current guidance suggests avoiding physical contact like a handshake or hug with anyone you do not live with.

Standing too close or being face-to-face is also advised against.

A distance of two metres from people you do not live or “bubble” with is advised.

Where two metres is not possible, one metre is advised with a face covering.

“@BucksCouncil great to see social distancing while your workforce are having a chat,” the person wrote on social media.

“You put signs around town welcoming us back that still encourage 2m distancing but seem to forget to tell your own workers.”

Speaking to the Local Democracy Reporting Service (LDRS), they said the scene was “ironic” given the council signage ‘indicating the need to maintain a two-metre distance’.

A Bucks Council spokesman said: “It’s a shame that our hard working operatives, who are out in all weathers collecting our rubbish and keeping our streets clean and tidy, have had this picture taken without full knowledge of the situation.

"They were in fact taking a group photo to send back to a local school to say thank-you for a compliment sent in about their good work during the pandemic. It was a nice gesture for them to make and shows we appreciate compliments about our work.

"The operatives have continued to work throughout the pandemic, delivering key front line services. They work in a bubble, often having to sit close together in a works vehicle. They all have access to regular lateral flow testing and the picture was being taken outside. We hope this clarifies the situation.”

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