Following constructive talks between the NUJ and the National Police Chiefs Council, the council has sent guidance to police forces in England, Wales and Northern Ireland on working with journalists during the Covid-19 outbreak.

The National Police Chiefs Council Communications Advisory Group has agreed to these guidelines being circulated to, and adopted by, Police Forces in England, Wales & Northern Ireland.

Police officers are likely to have contact with journalists who will continue doing their job during the Government's Covid-19 Coronavirus restrictions. The following guidance outlines how this should be approached.

  • Journalists are covered as key workers
  • There is a public interest in keeping the population informed of the developing crisis and subsequent recovery / return to normality
  • Responsible journalism promotes good community relations and assists the emergency services, which is essential in the current health emergency
  • Journalists will be expected to carry a UK Press Card or other official record of employment
  • Police will engage with them if officers are unsure why they are out.
  • We will expect them to comply with the Public Health guidelines e.g. on numbers, social distancing, and if not we'll explain and encourage them to do so


The union advices members to print out and carry a copy of this guidance.