Lockdown lifting: Two vaccinated people can meet up from today

The Irish government has announced a “cautious approach” to the reopening of society, as Taoiseach Micheál Martin told the nation tonight that we are “on the final stretch of this terrible journey.”

From today, two fully vaccinated people can legally meet up without face coverings or social distancing, provided they have had their second dose at least two weeks ago.

The 5km limit on travel will be lifted on April 12, allowing people to journey anywhere within their county, or 20km from their home into another county.

Outdoors meetings of two households can also occur from that date, but not in a person’s garden, whilst all secondary school students will return to class after Easter.

Some construction projects will also be permitted from April 12, specifically involving private homes and childcare buildings.

Senior inter-county GAA players and some other athletes will be allowed train together from April 19, whilst April 26 will see the re-opening of a range of sports and outdoor activities for the general public.

That date will also see funeral numbers increase from 10 to 25 mourners, but it remains to be seen whether churches, hairdressers, beauty salons, pubs, restaurants and other businesses will be allowed to operate again in early May.

“This summer, our businesses and our public services will safely reopen. We will finally be meeting and enjoying the company of friends and family once again,” Taoiseach Micheál Martin said.

“We will be able to travel within and enjoy our beautiful country again. Jobs and livelihoods will be restored. And most importantly, the worst of this awful pandemic will be behind us. Steadily, and safely, let’s get through this final phase together.”

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