Covid restrictions lifted in County Kildare

Kildare Town, like the rest of the county, has seen Covid-19 restrictions lifted as of Monday.


By Anthony Neeson

As summer begins to give way to autumn, there's some light at the end of the tunnel. Covid-19 restrictions for County Kildare have been lifted by the government.

The restrictions were imposed on Kildare, along with counties Laois and Offaly, on August 8. However, when they were lifted in Laois and Offaly on August 22, Kildare remained in lockdown due to the cases of coronavirus infection in the county.

Travel restrictions were imposed and people were encouraged to work from home if they could do so. Bars serving food and cafes could only offer takeaway or outdoor dining of no more than 15 people. Sport was also stopped.

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On Monday, it was announced that the measures that were introduced for Kildare would be lifted with immediate effect.

It came after the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET) met to review the epidemiological situation in the county, confirming that it continues to improve and is now broadly similar to that across the country.

The rolling five-day average in Kildare is 10.8 cases as of 29th August. This compares to a five day average of 22.2 cases in Kildare on 6th August. Seventy-five cases were notified in Kildare in the week to 29th August, comparing to 238 cases notified in the week to 8th August.

The epidemiological situation in Kildare and the rest of the country are “broadly similar” NPHET concluded.

Kildare business leaders are now calling for a financial injection after the three week lockdown in the county.

Meanwhile, the government has introduced a new wage scheme to help businesses struggling under the current restrictions.

The Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme will continue to provide payroll support until the end of March next year. It is replacing the Temporary Wage Subsidy Scheme which came into effect in March this year and underpinned the wages of almost 370,000 employees.

Businesses that qualify must have a drop-off in turnover of at least 30 percent, while the old scheme subsidized per worker 410 Euro a week, the new scheme will be reduced to 203 Euro a week.