SINN Féin leader Mary Lou McDonald says that any additional Covid-19 restrictions imposed by the government need to be matched by supports.
McDonald, speaking on Morning Ireland, said that her party will back any additional measures introduced, but has implored the government to match those with supports for those who will be impacted.
She said that additional measures, such as the restoration of the Pandemic Unemployment Payment (PUP) to €250 per week, must also be announced.
“I absolutely accept we are in a grave situation and stronger measures are required,” Deputy McDonald said.
“Not alone will we support this, I think it is a matter of great relief to have clarity on this.
“I don’t think a weekend of worry, wonder and speculation has been of any assistance to anybody so we need a decision and of course it needs to be considered and balanced.
“We have made the point time and again that additional restrictions – whatever they are – need to be matched by additional supports and protections.
“Our strong view is that acknowledging that people are going to struggle with added restrictions and then securing the roof over their heads is a good way to build that social cohesion needed from the public, and to rekindle that often-used phrase of ‘we are in this together’.”
McDonald said that a six-week period, as recommended by the National Public Health Emergency Team, would be ‘challenging’.
However, the opposition leader said that NPHET’s data should ‘shape all other decisions’.
She said: “The numbers and the data don’t lie. Some things are unpredictable but what is quite predictable is that the virus spreads really quickly and exponentially. In fact, it is so predictable that experts can model where we will be down the line if we continue on the path that we are on.”Tags: