#WATCH Taoiseach confirms Covid-19 Level 5 until after Easter but school restrictions to ease

David Hurley


David Hurley

BREAKING: Taoiseach confirms extension of Level 5 restrictions until after Easter

An Taoiseach Micheál Martin has confirmed that Level 5 restrictions will remain in place until at least April 5

The Taoiseach Micheál Martin has confirmed that Level 5 restrictions will remain in place until at least April 5 but school restrictions will ease.

In a televised address this Tuesday evening, he said the Government hopes to be in a position to review, and possibly ease, some of the restrictions on social gatherings, business and travel after Easter.

As expected, the phased re-opening of schools from next Monday has been confirmed. From March 1, junior classes will return to in-class education at primary schools along with Leaving Certificate students.

There will also be a phased re-opening of childcare during March and efforts will be made over the coming weeks to resume non-Covid health and social care.

There will be no other easing of restrictions on business or social gatherings during March. 

The Government has also launched its new pandemic plan called COVID-19 Resilience and Recovery 2021 - The Path Ahead. MORE BELOW TWEET.

"I know how hard this is, I know the toll that it is having on so many people's mental health and wellbeing. I know the devastation it has brought to so many business and livelihoods but I also know that the end is now truly in sight," said Mr Martin.

"We have already shown what a remarkably resilient people we are, we have drawn on a deep innate sense of community an solidarity to get us this far. That's why I know that we will get through this," he said.

In his address, Mr Martin said the Government is anxious to ensure that things remain open whenever restrictions are eased.

He said the levels of community transmission of the disease will be a key factor in any future decisions as will the numbers being treated in hospital and ICU

The Taoiseach also said the roll-out of Covid-19 vaccines will be "a gamechanger" and that 82% of all adults will have received at least one dose by the end of June.

"We will get through this but I want to make sure that when we ease each particular restriction, we take a careful approach to ensure that we open something it stays open".

Read the Covid-19 Resilience and Recovery 2021 - The Path Ahead here