'Far too early' to say what impact Covid will have on Christmas, says Taoiseach

ireland
'Far Too Early' To Say What Impact Covid Will Have On Christmas, Says Taoiseach
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The Taoiseach has said it is "far too early" to say what type of Christmas people are facing.
Micheál Martin said the Government was focusing on making Level 5 restrictions work and that he wanted to wait until the end of November before making decisions about the festive period."It's far too early to say what type of a Christmas we will be experiencing," he said, adding that he had noticed a significant change in people's mood.

I think people want this to work and if we get the numbers really down then we can look to managing it then for the next number of months.

Mr Martin made the comments at the launch of the Government's "keep well" campaign at Government Buildings in Dublin.

"We're very conscious that the pandemic has an impact on mental health, and the psychology of the pandemic is very, very important," Mr Martin said.

"That's why we're endeavouring to build resilience because these are not normal times. People's lives have been upended."

Ireland
Industrial action over Covid-19 can be avoided in...
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Meanwhile, Mr Martin has said he believes that industrial action by teachers over Covid-19 safety concerns in schools can be avoided.

Members of the Association of Secondary Teachers Ireland (ASTI) voted yesterday to take industrial action as a "last resort" unless the Government “immediately addresses” concerns over Covid-19 safety in schools.

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The union is calling for a comprehensive testing programme with 24-hour turnaround, a redefinition of close contacts for school settings and appropriate arrangements for teachers categorised as high risk.

Mr Martin said the Government will be engaging closely with the ASTI and he hopes industrial action can be avoided.

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