Video: Path to herd immunity, brides-to-be protest and Kerry witness appeal

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Path to herd immunity

The Cabinet has agreed to extend Ireland’s Covid-19 vaccine rollout to those aged 12 to 15 years old.

Minister Simon Coveney has said the extension of the vaccination programme to the younger age group will be “a significant advantage” for the return to school and in stopping the spread of the Delta variant.

He added there had been a lot of discussion with the National Public Health Emergency Team (Nphet) about herd immunity, which would get “higher and higher” as coronavirus variants become more and more aggressive.

However, he said the country would be in “a strong space” once the level of vaccination was over 80 per cent for all of the population.

Meanwhile, the Irish Pharmacy Union (IPU) has warned that waning supplies of the Janssen vaccine could impact the current pace of Ireland’s vaccine rollout.

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Registration opened today for teenagers aged 16 and 17 and the first walk-in Covid-19 vaccination centres are to open this weekend, according to the Taoiseach.

Brides-to-be protest

A group of brides staged a protest today in Dublin city centre calling on the Government to expand the number of guests at weddings to 100.

Vice-president of the Wedding International Professionals Association (WIPA), Michelle McDermott, said that current restrictions have been damaging for couples and the industry.

Amid the protest, the Government said that from August 5th, 100 people will be able to attend both wedding ceremonies and receptions.

Minister Simon Coveney said that the Cabinet this afternoon agreed in principle to the relaxation of restrictions on weddings as weddings need "special treatment".

Down Syndrome Ireland marks 50 years

Down Syndrome Ireland marked its 50th anniversary on Monday with the unveiling of a 60-foot mural in Dublin city centre.

The artwork on the gable end of a building at the junction of Harcourt Street and Clonmel Street, created by artist and activist Joe Caslin, features 21-year-old Amanda Butler from Mullingar.

“The artwork is Amanda looking down on the world and she is asking you to consider her place within a community, a workplace, and the healthcare setting,” Mr Caslin said.

The mural is part of a wider programme of activities as part of the charity’s new campaign, The Upside, with a new report on public attitudes also launched to highlight how the reality of life for people with Down Syndrome and their families often falls short of many people’s aspirations.

Kerry witness appeal

Gardaí have issued an appeal for witnesses as they investigate “all the circumstances” surrounding the discovery of a woman’s body in a house in Kerry on Monday.

The body was found in the Lixnaw area of Co Kerry yesterday morning, with the house sealed off for a technical examination and the woman’s body removed for a post-mortem examination.

In an update on Tuesday, gardaí said those investigating are maintaining “an open mind” and An Garda Síochána is not providing any further information at this time.

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