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TDs told to cover up in Dáil as rule on masks is introduced

 

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'Mr Ó Fearghaíl said Leinster House is a shared workspace and it is in everyone’s interests that those working there “adopt a consistent and safe approach” to returning to work during the pandemic.' (stock photo)

'Mr Ó Fearghaíl said Leinster House is a shared workspace and it is in everyone’s interests that those working there “adopt a consistent and safe approach” to returning to work during the pandemic.' (stock photo)

'Mr Ó Fearghaíl said Leinster House is a shared workspace and it is in everyone’s interests that those working there “adopt a consistent and safe approach” to returning to work during the pandemic.' (stock photo)

TDs and senators will be required to wear face coverings in Leinster House and the Convention Centre Dublin (CCD) where parliamentary sittings are being held.

The new rule will also apply to Oireachtas staff, political employees and members of the media.

In an email to TDs and senators, Ceann Comhairle Seán Ó Fearghaíl said wearing face coverings can play an important part in addressing the spread of the virus in indoor settings where it is not always possible to adhere to two metres' social distancing.

"Therefore, I am strongly encouraging members to wear a face covering in shared spaces and circulation areas, where at all possible, with effect from today, Monday, 20 July," Mr Ó Fearghaíl said.

"I would also encourage members to wear face coverings in the chamber and in committee rooms, when not speaking or making a contribution. Members are requested to use their own face coverings, however, the facilities unit will have reusable and disposable masks available if required," he added.

Safety

Mr Ó Fearghaíl said Leinster House is a shared workspace and it is in everyone's interests that those working there "adopt a consistent and safe approach" to returning to work during the pandemic.

It is mandatory to wear a face mask on public transport and the Government plans to make it mandatory while shopping.

Refusing to wear a non-medical face covering in either setting could result in a six-month prison sentence or €2,500 fine.

Bus and train drivers can refuse to allow a passenger to board if they are not wearing a face mask.

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The World Health Organisation has recommended using masks to stop the virus spreading.

There was debate among health officials in Ireland for a number of months before it was decided to make it mandatory to wear a mask on public transport.

Some groups of people are exempt from wearing coverings but the majority of people on buses and trains are using masks.

Visit our Covid-19 vaccine dashboard for updates on the roll out of the vaccination program and the rate of Coronavirus cases Ireland


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