February 16, 2021
“Beyond belief” that government legislation on mandatory hotel quarantine is still not finalised – Darren O’Rourke TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Transport Darren O’Rourke TD has said it is beyond belief that the final version of the legislation on mandatory hotel quarantine was reportedly not ready for this morning’s Cabinet meeting.

Teachta O’Rourke said:

“It is incredible that this legislation isn’t yet fully ready to be brought before Cabinet.

“NPHET have been calling for mandatory hotel quarantine from as far back as last May, when they wrote to the Minister for Health recommending strict restrictions on visitors.

“Now here we are nine months later, and the government is scrambling to put a bill together.

“This is a further example of the government’s failure to plan and act on the public health advice, especially in regards to international travel.

“When we finally get to see this legislation, it will need detailed scrutiny, and it will also need to be enacted to give effect to its provisions, and there is no clear timeline in relation to that.

“We believe the legislation should contain provision for, not just a shortlist of countries, but for all non-essential international arrivals.

“The government’s approach and slow realisation that these measures are required has been totally inadequate.

“Separately, we cannot understand why the government is not introducing a mandatory post-arrival test, as was explicitly requested by NPHET.

“This is an urgent situation which requires an urgent response. We cannot afford to waste any more time on half-baked plans.” 

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