17 Jan 2022

Front line Gardai should be a priority for vaccine

Dundalk gardai investigating ‘suspicious approach’ near local school

Gardai deserve to be priorities for the Covid vaccine says Deputy Michael Lowry

"Our Gardai and their families deserve protection from the Covid vaccine in the same way as all other Frontline workers." - Deputy Michael Lowry.

Deputy Michael Lowry says that Gardai must be considered a priority for Covid vaccination due to the work they do in their line of duty.

Gardai are currently placed at Number 10 on the Priority List for vaccination.

Deputy Lowry says that this is totally unacceptable and has raised the issued with the Minister for Health, Stephen Donnelly, seeking his urgent intervention.

"Garda Members are expected to interact with every facet of society on a daily basis and quiet often this interaction brings them into close contact with individuals who are uncooperative and sometimes violent. They are also required to attend at sudden deaths in people’s homes with little or no knowledge if the person has died as a result of the virus. They attend at Accident and Emergency departments on a daily basis and, while everyone from the Janitor to the Consultants employed by the H.S.E. are vaccinated, the Gardai attending the call are not.

Tipperary Deputy Michael Lowry

"Gardai are required to go to the homes of the elderly and Immune compromised people on a regular basis and, given the amount of Social Contacts they have each day and the fact that they are not vaccinated, this places the most vulnerable in our society in added danger of contracting the virus.

"Gardai have displayed exceptional courage and showed their absolute determination in carrying out their duties over the course of the last 12 months. With no negotiation, their roster and working terms and conditions have been upended. They have manned tens of thousands of checkpoints in all weather conditions across the country while playing their part in limiting the spread of this virus.

"Our Gardai and their families deserve protection from the Covid vaccine in the same way as all other Frontline workers. They do not have the option to stay at home to protect themselves and put themselves at risk every time they go to work’ says Deputy Lowry.

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