THE Minister for Health, Simon Harris, says that the wearing of face coverings is a recommendation but not a requirement.
The first phase of Ireland’s reopening begins on Monday.
The 2km limit that is in place for general exercise will be increased to 5km while people who had been cocooning can leave their homes, although they must avoid all contact.
Outdoor workers, such as those in construction and gardeners, will be allowed back to work while some retail outlets, like garden centres, hardware shops and repair shops, will reopen.
It will also be possible to meet friends and family from other households outdoors in groups of no more than four, while also maintaining strict social distancing.
The Health Minister spoke today about the wearing of face masks.
“The first thing I would do is differentiate between a face mask, which is something people might use in a health or social care setting and a face covering, which might be something that you or I could make at home,” he said.
“There is now guidance that in certain circumstances, there may be some benefits to wearing a face covering – that’s generally on public transport, or in enclosed indoors indoor spaces where you can’t property or safety and physically distance from from another person.”
Harris, however, stressed that he did not wish to see a situation where there was a stigma around not wearing a face covering.
He said: “The guidance suggests that people under the age of 13 should not wear face coverings and also there are people with certain medical conditions, and people with allergies or perhaps people with autism who find the material, from a sensitivity point of view, to be too difficult to wear.
“So, not everybody is in a position to wear a face covering and it’s not mandatory, what it simply is, is guidance as an extra hygiene measure that people may wish to consider in certain circumstances.”Tags: