| 15.6°C Dublin

laws criticised Simon Harris: Fully vaccinated people should not have to enter mandatory hotel quarantine

Harris said it is very hard to “logically explain” how someone who is fully vaccinated for a period of time is “a greater risk than you or I."

Close

The Minister said it was his "very firm view" that people who are fully vaccinated should not have to enter mandatory hotel quarantine.

The Minister said it was his "very firm view" that people who are fully vaccinated should not have to enter mandatory hotel quarantine.

The Minister said it was his "very firm view" that people who are fully vaccinated should not have to enter mandatory hotel quarantine.

People who are fully vaccinated and can produce a negative PCR test on arrival in Ireland should not have to enter mandatory hotel quarantine, is the “very firm view” of Minister Simon Harris.

The Higher Education Minister said it is very hard to “logically explain” how someone who is fully vaccinated for a period of time is “a greater risk than you or I,” while speaking on RTÉ Radio One's Today with Claire Byrne.

Under current legislation, everybody arriving from countries on the mandatory list must do so, regardless of whether they are fully vaccinated or not.

Minister Harris said he welcomed the news that Government has committed to looking at the possibility of changing this.

Close

Higher Education Minister Simon Harris said it is very hard to “logically explain” how someone who is fully vaccinated for a period of time is “a greater risk than you or I."

Higher Education Minister Simon Harris said it is very hard to “logically explain” how someone who is fully vaccinated for a period of time is “a greater risk than you or I."

Higher Education Minister Simon Harris said it is very hard to “logically explain” how someone who is fully vaccinated for a period of time is “a greater risk than you or I."

“We should prioritise mandatory hotel quarantine for those most at risk of bringing the virus into our country, particularly the variants. It’s hard to logically explain if someone is fully vaccinated for a period of time, why they are at greater risk of you and I.”

Minister Harris said there are 556 students studying abroad in countries that are added to Ireland’s mandatory hotel quarantine list from this Thursday.

The Minister said they arrive home at varying intervals between April and September and said: “I want students that are abroad on Erasmus to finish their Erasmus programme.

“Stay where you are - some are in the middle of exams - and enjoy yourself insofar as much as you can in a pandemic. Stay where you are and come home when it is your time to come home.”

Mr Harris said the legislation around the mandatory hotel quarantine lapses after three months so it is possible students returning in August or September may return to a “very different scenario”.

“We’ve seen countries drop off the list in recent days, as well as be added to it. My message to students is don’t panic. We will cover the costs, if they are there for students returning.

“I don’t want students returning to put their hand in their pocket, is the idea”.

Minister Harris said Government is looking at extending a pre-existing compassionate waiver of costs to students. The maximum cost of this will be one million euro but the minister said he anticipates it costing “nothing like that” as countries are likely to drop off the list as time progresses.

Sunday World Newsletter

Sign up for the latest news and updates

This field is required This field is required

The Minister said that his announcement today focuses on just Erasmus students, and not students studying abroad in the US or Canada.

Many Irish students, as of now, will have to pay the cost of the quarantine should they come home after Thursday.

Mr Harris suggested that many of these students will be vaccinated relatively soon in the US and may not have to incur the cost if they return after such a time where fully vaccinated people are not obligated to enter the mandatory hotel quarantine any longer.

Download the Sunday World app

Now download the free app for all the latest Sunday World News, Crime, Irish Showbiz and Sport. Available on Apple and Android devices

Online Editors


Privacy