Frontline staff received high praise at the first online meeting of Donegal County Council.
The first plenary council meeting of 2021 took place via video conferencing today. Councillors’ monthly meetings had taken place in the Aura Leisure Centre from May 2020 to accommodate social distancing, but the worsening public health situation has led to proceedings being hosted on a virtual platform this month.
As 37 councillors and council staff collaborated online, Cathaoirleach Rena Donaghey took the opportunity to acknowledge the commitment and contribution of frontline workers during the crisis.
Cllr Donaghey said frontline workers have played an essential role in maintaining critical services in the county during the pandemic.
The Cathoirleach said: “The council has been able to maintain the provision of essential services during the pandemic, with staff adopting new working arrangements to ensure that services are delivered.
“The Council has ongoing engagement with the HSE and an Garda Síochána, the community and voluntary groups, co-ordinating their arrangements for the provision of services and support to our communities and to our businesses.
“It is critically important at this time that we continue to adhere to all public health advice to support the exceptional work that is being done in our health service, which has been severely stretched with the numbers in hospitals.”
Cllr Donaghey paid tribute to all staff working in healthcare and thanked them for all their efforts over the last twelve months
“We hope that the current promising signs that infection levels may be reducing continue and the numbers admitted to hospital care stabilizes and begins to reduce,” she said.
Earlier today, the council passed a motion from Cllr Jack Murray calling on Donegal County Council to express gratitude to all front-line staff during the pandemic.
Cllr Murray’s motion sought to recognise the huge sacrifices being made by so many and calls for proper recognition for all involved.
“In doing so this council calls for fair pay for all student nurses and midwives during the pandemic,” the motion added.