The Dublin Social Democrats TDs, Róisín Shortall, Cian O’Callaghan and Gary Gannon, and Dublin Social Democrat Councillors, have called on people living in the capital to work together to drive down the virus, after the Government decision to move to Level 3 of the Covid Plan, based on NHPET advice.
In a joint statement, they said:
“We are at a very critical stage in responding to the virus in the Dublin region. We are all being asked to follow crucially important public health advice to protect ourselves and those around us and suppress the seriously worrying rise in Covid cases in Dublin.
“For very many people this will cause huge difficulties. It will mean restricting our family and social activities, weddings, funerals and sports. However, it is vital that we all follow the new guidance, despite the serious challenges it brings for families and businesses.
“It is heartbreaking for many businesses, especially in the hospitality and services sector, many of which are already holed below the waterline, to face into another period of huge restrictions. Many will have to destroy perishable stock that they are now not able to use. It is also shocking and worrying for those employed in such businesses who may be laid off temporarily or lose their jobs.
“It is essential that the measures announced by the Government are sufficiently robust for businesses to enable them to keep going through this Level 3 period and to restart afterwards. The lessons from the lockdowns in Kildare/Laois/Offaly showed that measures weren’t always agile enough to support many businesses and this must be addressed urgently now in Dublin. In addition, emergency income support measures may be necessary to help the thousands of workers who will be laid-off this weekend.
“If we are to hold onto the goodwill of the public and sustain efforts to get Covid-19 under control, the Government must provide frequent, accessible information about the level of the virus in their neighbourhoods. People are then in a position to understand the rationale for the lockdown and can see the results of their collective efforts.
“Despite the confusions and unclear messaging prior to this point, at the core of all measures to suppress the virus must be a highly effective Test & Trace system. The system is not robust enough nor fast enough yet. It is vital that we trace exactly where the virus is being transmitted and it’s regrettable that we don’t have this in place yet. We are calling on the Government to dramatically expand the capacity of the testing and tracing system so that we can get on top of the virus before it escalates totally out of control.”
September 18, 2020