Green List must address travel concerns

Duncan Smith TD
19 July 2020
  • Mandatory airport testing for visitors from Covid-19 hotspots needed.
  • Clarity needed on whether Irish people are deemed ok to travel to Green list.

With the Government due to publish a list of green list locations on Monday, Labour transport spokesperson Duncan Smith said the announcement must clarify if they agree with Irish people travelling to those countries, and also address other travel concerns including mandatory testing for visitors from Covid-19 hotspots, how refunds will be applied for those with holidays booked abroad, and the need for in-person follow ups on those in 14 day quarantine.

Deputy Smith said:

“The government will finally publish a green list of travel locations on Monday, but this will create as many problems as it resolves. The clear public health advice is still to avoid all non-essential travel yet many people will take the publication of the list as permission to travel to those locations. The indications from the Government is that people still shouldn’t travel but that has not been confirmed. That needs to be quickly clarified tomorrow.

“The advice seems to be that Irish people should not travel abroad but visitors from those countries on the green list do not have to quarantine. If that is the case then there is a clear need for refunds, vouchers, or the ability to rebook at a later date for holidays Irish people have booked but are being told not to take. Planes will still be travelling but people won’t be able to get refunds.

“What will also be needed is mandatory testing at our airports and ports for visitors coming from countries not on the Green list. The current rules are unworkable and unenforceable, and the public are concerned about this. I called for this a week ago and it makes sense to test visitors from countries that are Covid-19 hotspots. Where we can take action to reduce the spread of Covid in Ireland we should.

“I am also concerned at the lack of follow-up on those who are meant to be undertaking 14 day mandatory quarantining. Phone calls are simply not enough, especially when it only covers a fraction of those coming into the country. There really must be in person follow up from public health officials to ensure the rules are being followed.”

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