Irish Examiner view: No wriggle room left on quarantining visitors to this country

Nation struggling with lockdown needs quarantine restrictions to work this time.
Irish Examiner view: No wriggle room left on quarantining visitors to this country

Travellers from many listed countries arriving in Irish airports are now required to quarantine themselves in hotels. This plan needs to work as Ireland battles to get out of lockdown and Level 5 restrictions. Picture: Sam Boal /

Monday's easing of pandemic lockdown measures cannot come quickly enough. As well as fighting the pandemic a national, or at least a near national, outbreak of cabin fever — a first cousin of lockdown fever — has meant that limits have already been at least stretched in too many instances. The integrity of the lockdown has been undermined and the risk exacerbated.

Tentative steps towards resuming what we remember as normal life depends on the previous steps being successful, on following an agreed road map and absorbing any change circumstances beyond our control might impose.

Should Monday's relaxation prove unwise and a reversal of freedoms be necessary it will be time to grasp the sharpest nettle. Official figures show that more than 6,000 people arrived from countries public health experts want on a mandatory hotel quarantine list. Any remaining wriggle room on this issue ends on Monday. If new restrictions become necessary in time this vulnerability can be confronted in only one way. 

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