HM Courts & Tribunals Service (HMCTS) will from this week offer voluntary on-site rapid testing at four courts to people who attend scheduled hearings and are not showing symptoms of COVID-19.
The move follows recent on-site and home-test pilots at its courts, with plans to further expand workplace testing across its estate over the coming weeks.
The four courts are Leeds Combined Court, Leicester Crown Court, Reading Crown Court and Winchester Combined Court.
The tests will be offered to all staff, judiciary, jurors, contractors, legal professionals, witness services, and professional court users who visit the site.
Rapid testing will also be offered to staff at Northampton County Court Business Centre, which is a back-office site that is not open to the public.
Earlier this year, HMCTS launched on-site testing pilots at Manchester Civil Justice Centre and Southwark Crown Court, to inform plans for workplace testing in the justice system. In March, a further home testing pilot was rolled out across five court sites.
Kevin Sadler, Acting CEO of HMCTS, said: “Justice is an essential service for victims, witnesses, families in crisis and defendants waiting in custody. Throughout the pandemic our courts and tribunals have been operating to ensure this vital service is maintained.
“We are pleased to be working across government to roll-out on-site testing across four court sites. We plan to expand the availability of rapid testing to our court users, and to our staff, and we continue to encourage all to make use of the community testing facilities that are available.”