Eamon Ryan: People shouldn't shame others for taking Christmas flights

ireland
The Minister for Transport said people should not be shamed for taking flights.
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James Cox

Minister for Transport Eamon Ryan says people should not be shaming others for taking a flight this Christmas.

It follows claims that international travellers have been met with a degree of toxicity and flight shaming through the Covid-19 pandemic.

The current advice from Government is that people should avoid all non-essential foreign travel.

But Mr Ryan says people should not be made feel bad for taking a flight.

Mr Ryan said: “I don't think that's the appropriate response. We don't know individuals' circumstances, so that shouldn't be the way [to criticise people for taking flights].

“If we go down the route of, 'oh that person is responsible', or that particular section, I don't think it serves us well. It doesn't increase security or safety and I think we've avoided that to date and we should continue to.”

Toxicity and flight shaming

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This comes after Donal Moriarty, Aer Lingus interim chief executive, said there had been an unfair “degree of toxicity and flight shaming” around international travel.

“The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control came out earlier this week and showed that international travel was the cause of less than one per cent of infections,” he said.

Speaking to Brendan O'Connor on RTÉ radio, Mr Moriarty added: “There was certainly a very negative narrative towards travel and it really wasn’t merited by the facts.

“Travel hasn’t been the ogre it’s portrayed as. There was a degree of toxicity and flight shaming and really we have to move on from that.”

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