Following a Cabinet meeting today the Government has decided to implement a number of measures in an effort to stop the spread of Covid-19.
The virus is on the increase in Ireland and in recent weeks there have been multiple outbreaks across workplaces, households, and in sports clubs. We need to act now to protect the vulnerable in our communities, enable schools to re-open and support the resumption of health services.
A number of measures are being put in place across the country until 13th September in an effort to stop the spread of the virus by limiting congregation and social interaction among households. There will also be an enhanced level of enforcement to ensure that workplaces, venues and organisers of activities adhere to the guidelines.
Measures agreed upon today include:
- Visitors to your home or garden should be limited to not more than 6 from not more than 3 households.
Cultural and Social Activities
Restaurants and Cafes (including pubs that serve food and hotel restaurants)
- Should close by 11.30pm
- All customer facing staff to wear face coverings
- All customers to wear face coverings until seated and again on departure
- Requirement to keep contact details to support contact tracing
- All customers to be seated at a table, with no seating allowed at the bar and table service only
- Maximum of 6 seated at a table
- No formal or informal events or parties should be organised in these premises
- All tables must have hand sanitiser.
Sporting events and matches can continue to take place but behind closed doors with:
- Strict avoidance of gatherings, including social gatherings, before or after events
- Strict adherence to 2 metre physical distancing before and after events, during breaks in play, on the sidelines and avoidance of team huddles
- Gyms/leisure centres/swimming pools/exercise and dance studios will remain open with strict distancing and other appropriate protective measures in place
- Limits of 6 apply to exercise and dance classes with appropriate physical distancing
- Limits of 15 apply to groups outside including training sessions (with exception of elite/professional sports and horseracing). There should be no mixing between groups.
- Unless it is absolutely essential for an employee to attend in person, they should work from home.
- People should avoid using public transport where possible
- Arrangements for school transport will proceed as planned for re-opening but the Minster for Education and Skills and the Minister for Health and other relevant Ministers will review measures, including any additional resources, to ensure the safe operation of school transport for secondary school children;
Over 70s and medically vulnerable People over 70 and the medically vulnerable can still meet up with people and get outside for exercise but if at all possible should avoid public transport, shop during designated hours or seek assistance through the “community call” if needed in accessing food, essential supplies and medicine.
They are also advised to maintain a 2 metre distance from others when exercising outdoors and wash hands on returning home.
Roadmap for Resilience & Recovery
The government will finalise and publish a Roadmap for Resilience & Recovery in advance of 13th September. This will map how we balance public health, economic and social aspects of living with Covid-19 in the short to medium term and try to bring some greater certainty so that society and business can at least plan forward.
Measures already agreed for Kildare, Laois and Offaly remain in place until 23rd August.
Everyone must play their part in ensuring that we suppress the virus so that we don’t have to re-impose stricter restrictions in the coming weeks. As a country we worked together to supress Covid-19, we know what works. We must redouble this effort now and all follow the measures that we know work – regular handwashing, keeping a 2m distance between ourselves and others, good cough and sneeze etiquette, wearing face coverings on public transport and in shops and other indoor outlets, limiting contacts with others and self-isolating immediately and ringing the GP if you have any symptoms.