Creches should be provided with C0monitors like schools, in order to protect children and their families, as well as early childhood educators, from the Delta variant of Covid-19.
That’s according to Elaine Dunne of the Federation of Early Childhood Providers.
“If it is being given to the schools, it should be given to the childcare sector as well,” she said. "We have been offered nothing."
The group is currently seeking a meeting with Children's Minister Roderic O’Gorman to secure his support for creches’ current safety policies around travel.
Many services are asking for a negative PCR test from children who have returned from a foreign holiday, or for the child to not attend for up to 14 days.
The current government advice is that children traveling with a vaccinated adult, or an adult who has recovered from Covid, do not need to isolate.
“That has always been our policy, all along we would have stuck to this for health and safety,” Ms Dunne said.
“Nothing has changed, only this time we are standing over them majorly because of the new variant.”
We are calling on our Minister @rodericogorman to support our sector and speak out on behalf of us all regarding our policies and procedures that are in place to keep all of our staff, children and families safe over the coming months regarding holidays. @CMOIreland— Elaine Dunne Federation Early Childhood Providers (@MurphyDunne) July 25, 2021
“We are asking for him to back us up with our policies and procedures. We don’t know where the Delta variant is going."
Creches do not want to see a repeat of what happened in January, she added.
"We are very cautious so at this time we are taking precautionary measures to ensure our services don’t close down again.”
"That has a knock-on effect for 40 to 50 families. That’s why we are being vigilant.”
Parents have been generally supportive of the policy so far, she added.
“We are asking Roderic O’Gorman to come out in support of the sector as to why we are doing this, to stand with us.”