Phase One Of COVID-19 Recovery Takes Effect Today – Here's What That Means

The first moves to ease a two-month lockdown designed to curb the spread of COVID-19 kicks off today, amid fears that loosened restrictions could see infection numbers rise.

The first phase of Ireland's roadmap to recovery begins today Monday, 18 May, and will see some safety restrictions being lifted in the process.

Leo Varadkar confirmed on Friday night that Phase One would go ahead on 18 May, which means that the people are allowed to leave their house for the following reason:

  • To go to work if your workplace is open and you cannot work from home
  • To shop for items you need
  • To exercise within 5km
  • For medical reasons or to care for others
  • To meet friends or family within 5km in groups of four or less

As well as this, the following retail outlets will be allowed to open on 18 May:

  • Hardware stores
  • Builders merchants and those providing essential supplies and tools for gardening
  • Farming and agriculture; garden centres and farmers markets
  • Opticians/Optometrists/Outlets providing hearing test services, selling hearing aids and appliances
  • Retailers involved in the sale, supply and repair of motor vehicles, motorcycles and bicycles and related facilities (for example, tyre sales and repairs)
  • Office products and services; electrical, IT and phone sales, repair and maintenance services for home. However, this does not include homeware stores

Meanwhile, the government is urging everyone to remember the importance of adhering to basic hygiene measures to stop the spread of COVID-19.

These are to:

  • Wash your hands regularly
  • Maintain a two-metre distance from others where possible
  • Cough or sneeze into your elbow or a tissue
  • Stay at home and self-isolate if you are sick

Should the first phase go according to plan (meaning that we do not see an increase in the rate of infection), Phase Two will begin on 8 June.

This will allow visits to other households, as well as the opening of more small retail outlets.

More information can be found on the government's website.

Main image by @mvb

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