"Extending Vaccine Passes for Indoor Hospitality would be a kick in the Teeth for the Sector" - Tóibín
Aontú leader Peadar Tóibín TD has warned against any extension to the current discriminatory Covid-19 vaccine pass requirement for indoor dining. He was speaking after the Tánaiste Leo Varadkar suggested on Newstalk today that the government will be consulting with NPHET and may opt to extend vaccine passes beyond October 22nd.
Deputy Tóibín said: "I was shocked to hear the Tánaiste's remarks on the Pat Kenny Show today where he suggested that government will be speaking to NPHET regarding continuing the discriminatory policy around indoor dining which sees unvaccinated people left outside in the cold. I was taken aback by the remarks for a number of reasons, firstly because I was under the impression that NPHET were to disband in mid-October. A Journal.ie opinion poll found that 41% of the population were in favour of disbanding Nphet. Is this decision shelved now? Secondly, the government made commitments to end most restrictions on October 22nd."
Deputy Tóibín continued: "I know of many people who've gone ahead and booked their wedding date, or other such events and get-togethers for the coming weeks based on the fact that all guests would be treated equally as a citizen. I was also under the impression from the HSE and their public commentary that we would be in a position to reopen fully if 80% of the adult population were vaccinated - Paul Reid suggested as much on Primetime in July, we now have over 90% of the adult population fully vaccinated, what has changed?"
"The government need to fulfil their commitment in terms of taking back decision making from NPHET. We need to reopen our country, end discrimination and get back to living our lives. Vaccine passports for restaurants and pubs are discriminatory especially as we face into colder weather conditions. A few months every Government TD was on the radio talking about antigen testing and yet here we are and all we have from those TDs is tumble weed. Leo Varadkar's remarks on Newstalk have upset a lot of people. He must now clarify if his position was that of the government, if it was a leak of plans, or if it was yet another solo run from a Fine Gael government minister", concluded Deputy Tóibín