Covid 19 Update – Summary of latest rules
(c) Government Publications 20/08/20 – Covid-19 Update
By law, you have to wear a mask or other face covering when you are on or in:
- public transport
- shopping centres
- nail salons
- hair salons and barbers
- tattoo and piercing parlours
- travel agents and tour operators
- laundries and dry cleaners
- betting shops and bookmakers
Masks are also recommended if you are:
- visiting someone who is over 70 years of age or who is otherwise medically vulnerable
- being visited by someone who is over 70 years of age or who is otherwise medically vulnerable
- sharing a car or other vehicle with someone you don’t live with
You are advised to limit the number of people you meet with, and to keep a daily log of people you meet for contact tracing purposes. It doesn’t have to be anything too formal – just a notebook saying who you met and at what time and date.
If you are having visitors over to your home, you can have up to 6 visitors from 3 different households.
Outdoor gatherings are safer than indoor gatherings. Right now, outdoor gatherings and events are limited to 15 people.
Schools are set to reopen shortly and making them as safe as possible is our highest priority. Because of the government’s commitment to reopening our schools, schools have been preparing for weeks to make things safer for students and staff.
These measures that schools are putting in place as well as the overarching desire to allow students back to learning and developing are part of the reason why schools are exempt from the 6-person limit on indoor gatherings.
Businesses or services such as museums, cinemas and art galleries are deemed to be controlled environments, with appropriate protective measures in place such as physical distancing between people. These venues can continue to operate where appropriate physical distancing and all other protective measures can continue to be maintained. Individual groupings attending these venues must be limited to six people from no more than 3 households.
All other indoor cultural events are subject to the 6 person maximum rule. A small number of exemptions for theatres may be made on a case by case basis following discussion with the Dept of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht.
All outdoor events are subject to the new limits of 15. These events are deemed as mass gatherings where there is a concentration of people at a specific location for a specific purpose over a set period of time. These types of events provide opportunities for the virus to spread.
Advice for the over 70s and medically vulnerable
The over 70s and medically vulnerable are advised to exercise individual judgement, and to stay at home as much as possible, and limit interactions to a very small network for short periods of time, while remaining physically distanced.
They will also be advised to:
- keep a 2 metre distance from others if exercising outdoors and wash hands on returning home
- avoid public transport
- shop during designated hours and wear a face covering. Family, friends and neighbours may be able to provide assistance with shopping once they adhere to physical distancing guidelines, alternatively, online services may be considered. Shops should ensure that there are designated hours for over 70s and medically vulnerable
- for those for whom these options are not available, you can contact your local authority, who are working with the voluntary sector services to ensure that people have access to food, essential household supplies and medicines
You should contact the hospital, nursing home or residential care facility for advice prior to making any visits.
You should absolutely not visit a healthcare or residential care facility if you have any symptoms of COVID-19 infection, are feeling unwell, or if you have been told you are a close contact of someone confirmed as having COVID-19.
All non-essential travel overseas should be avoided. Anyone arriving to Ireland from overseas must complete a COVID-19 Passenger Locator Form. Further information and guidance is available here.
Businesses are to ensure that employees are working from home where possible. The Return to Work Safely Protocol clearly sets out the steps that must be taken before a workplace can reopen.
Employer’s responsibility to provide face coverings
Employers must provide, as is reasonably practicable, personal protective equipment such as gloves and masks. The Return to Work Safely Protocol clearly sets out the steps that must be taken by employers to protect their employees.
Gyms/leisure centres/swimming pools/exercise and dance studios can remain open with strict distancing and other appropriate protective measures in place.
Exercise and dance classes should be limited to 6 people and observe physical distancing rules.
Groups exercising outdoors should be limited to 15 people, including training sessions. There should be no mixing between groups.
It is recommended that those responsible for managing these facilities carry out a risk assessment before reopening to manage the public health risk for their customers, attendees, participants, and staff.
As of right now, weddings of 50 people can still take place. We recognise that weddings are one of the most special times in a couple’s lives. The government is currently reviewing this guidance and will make an announcement on that shortly.