Indoor dining and hospitality can return in Ireland this Monday, July 26, Taoiseach Micheál Martin today confirmed.
The confirmation comes just hours after President of Ireland Michael D. Higgins signed into law the Health (Amendment) (No. 2) Bill 2021, which passed through the Dáil and the Seanad last week.
The new law calls for "a robust and enforceable system of verification of the health status of certain persons, including vaccination or recovery status."
Having considered the Health (Amendment) (No.2) Bill 2021, the President has signed the Bill and it has accordingly become law.— President of Ireland (@PresidentIRL) July 21, 2021
Work is reportedly underway for an app that people can use to provide proof of vaccination or recovery from COVID within the previous six months.
Dr. Ronan Glynn, Ireland's Deputy Chief Medical Officer, today confirmed that 65 percent of adults in the Republic of Ireland are fully vaccinated. Vaccine registration today opened to people between the ages of 18 and 24.
According to RTE, there will be no time limits for patrons using indoor service, but establishments must be closed and clear of customers by 11:30 pm.
Tables can have a maximum of six people. Unvaccinated children will also be allowed to dine with adults as long as their table is situated two meters away from other tables.
Tanaiste Leo Varadkar today told reporters: "The advice from NPHET (the National Public Health Emergency Team) is that people who are fully vaccinated, indoors, don’t need to observe social distancing. But because there will be children there, because of the staff that aren’t fully vaccinated, we’ll continue to apply those rules and regulations around social distancing,”
Varadkar outlines how indoor hospitality will work from Monday, says regulations and guidelines will be in place by then.
Doesn't expect 'any further easing' after Monday. pic.twitter.com/ndpRTq1fKR— Rónán Duffy (@ronanduffy_) July 21, 2021
The Taoiseach today said: “There’s an obligation on all of us as individuals, there’s an obligation on the operators of facilities and restaurants and clubs, to make absolutely sure that the new situation pertaining to indoor dining is fully adhered to the spirit and in the letter.
"There really has to be adherence to because we’ve managed so far to reopen society across many different sectors, which has been very helpful to people at work. I’m talking about personal services, I’m talking about retail, construction, and so forth."
Donall O’Keeffe, Chief Executive of the Licensed Vintners Association (LVA), said today's news is "positive," but called upon Fáilte Ireland is urgently issue necessary guidelines and cautioned that the use of vaccine certificates may lead to "flashpoints."