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Coronavirus (COVID-19)

For the current advice, visit:

ESbOLmPXkAALLd1www.hse.ie
www.gov.ie/health-covid-19
How to be Vetted for a “Volunteer” Role during COVID-19

Resilience and Recovery 2020 - 2021: National Plan for Living with COVID-19

Ireland is moving from a short-term emergency response approach to a medium-term approach to managing risk and repairing the damage that COVID-19 has inflicted on society.

Ireland has moved to Level 5 from 31 December 2020. You can see the full measures that will apply here.

COVID-19

Members of the public must wear a face covering on public transport and in certain premises

Provided as guidance only and correct as of the 8 December 2020.  Please see https://www.hse.ie/eng/ for current (Update) Covid 19 guidance. 

COVID-19 Fixed Payment update (11 January 2021)

A number of offences under SI 560, SI 244 and SI 296 are now deemed to be Fixed Payment Notice Offences.
 
Members of the public must wear a face covering on public transport and in certain premises unless they have a reasonable excuse. Reasonable excuses include where a person:

  • Cannot put one on, wear or remove a face covering because of any physical or mental illness, impairment or disability or without severe distress
  • Needs to communicate with another person who has difficulties communicating
  • Removes the face covering to provide emergency assistance or to provide care or assistance to a vulnerable person
  • Removes the face covering to take medication
  • Removes the face covering to avoid harm or injury, or the risk of harm or injury.

The regulations on face coverings do not apply to children under the age of 13.
 
Where an offence is detected and involves a child under 18 years of age, they may be dealt with through the Juvenile diversion program.

Indirect Enforcement

Public transport

To enforce the regulations on the wearing of face coverings on public transport, a ‘relevant person' (public transport operator such as a bus driver or train driver) must first ask an individual to wear a face covering. If the individual refuses, then the relevant person can ask them to leave the public transport or not to get on the public transport. The relevant person can then call the Gardaí for assistance if required.
 
Certain premises

The owner or manager of the premises has a responsibility to encourage people to wear a face covering, and they should take all reasonable steps to engage with the individual before Gardaí are called for assistance.     
    
Enforcement is a last resort
 
Garda members will continue to use the 4 Es: Engage, Explain, Encourage and Enforce. Enforcement should only be used when necessary and proportionate. 
 
Garda actions if a person is non-compliant
   
Public transport: The offence here is failing to comply with the request of a relevant person. Gardaí will establish if the relevant person has given a direction to comply with the regulations. Garda attending at the incident will record the name of that relevant person and what exact requirement they made of the suspect offender.

The Garda member will use the 4 Es with the individual and clearly explain that at this point they are committing an offence, and give them an opportunity to come into compliance with the relevant persons request. (wear a face mask)

Gardaí will then give the individual a direction under Section 31A(7) to come into compliance with the request of the relevant person. If they continue to fail to comply, Gardaí may consider that the offence has been committed and can demand the individual's name and address under Section 31A(9).
 
Certain premises: The offence here is failing to wear a face covering in certain premises. A responsible person (e.g. shop owner/ manager) must take all reasonable steps to bring the individual into compliance. The responsible person cannot make a lawful requirement like the bus driver can. This person can only advise. Therefore, if Gardaí are called to assist, and will identify the responsible person and establish what action they have taken to bring the person into compliance.

Once this is established, Garda members can engage with the individual. An opportunity to come into compliance should be given. If this fails, Gardaí can give a direction to the individual under Section 31A(7) to come into compliance. If they continue to fail to comply, Gardaí may consider that the offence has been committed and  demand the individual's name and address under Section 31A(9).
 
A Garda member can arrest without warrant an individual who doesn’t give their name and address, or who gives a false or misleading name and address.
 
If the individual does not comply with the Garda directions on the wearing of face coverings on public transport or in certain premises, then a Fixed Payment Notice will issue.

The issuing of these Fixed Payment Notices will be at the discretion of the individual member. The individual Garda member is not required to consult with the DPP or with their Divisional Officer before issuing a fine for the specific offences outlined below.
 
Note: Failure to comply with a Garda direction issued under Section 31A(7) is a separate offence, but not a Fixed Payment Notice Offence.

It is the investigating Garda member’s decision to decide if a separate investigation file is required for the DPP for that offence, but the issue of an FPN may be sufficient.

Offences and payment amount 

(Updated 11 January 2021)
Members can now issue Fixed Payment Notices of €100 for the following offence related to movement of persons:

  1. Travelling without a reasonable excuse (Offence code HC1054). 

Members can now issue Fixed Payment Notices of €80 for the following 7 offences related to the wearing of face coverings:

  1. Not wearing a face covering on public transport (Offence code HC1016A)
  2. Remain off public transport without a face covering (Offence code HC1016B). This refers to someone failing to comply with a direction from the relevant person (e.g. bus driver) to remain off public transport without a face covering.
  3. Alight from public transport (Offence code HC1016C). This refers to someone refusing to get off public transport when directed to do by a relevant person for not wearing a face covering.
  4. Not wearing a face covering in certain premises (Offence code HC1044). 'Certain premises' includes shops, shopping centres, libraries, cinemas, theatres, concert halls, bingo halls, museums, nail salons, hairdressers, tattoo and piercing studios, travel agents, laundries, dry cleaners, bookmakers, train stations and bus stations.  
  5. Not wearing a face covering in small public service vehicles (Offence code HC1084). This refers to the obligation of the taxi driver to take all reasonable steps to ensure people wear a face covering in taxis.
  6. Not wearing a face covering by a worker in a relevant premises (Offence code HC1094). This refers to the obligation for workers in shops to wear face coverings.
  7. Not wearing a face covering by a responsible person in a relevant premises (Offence code HC1104). This refers to the obligation for the manager/owner/occupier to wear a face covering if they are involved in the preparation or service of food and/or beverages for consumption on the premises.

Samples of Fixed Payment Notices

Sample FPN Offence Wording re SI 560

COVID-19 FPN Cancellation Request Form and Guidance Notes

Please see HSE guidelines on how to wear face coverings below:

hse-face-covering-guidelines-poster-screen-Copy  covid-19-face-covering-guidelines-poster

4E's

In respect of regulations, including travel restrictions, which are not declared to be Penal Regulations under the Health Act 1947 as amended, An Garda Síochána will utilise the following three Es from the 4E approach - engage, explain and encourage, only.

In respect of regulations which are declared to be Penal Regulations under the Health Act 1947 as amended, An Garda Síochána adopts the approach of the four Es which sees Gardaí engage, explain, encourage, and as a last resort, enforce. 

Five things to know

Contacting An Garda Síochána

All Public Offices of Garda stations remain open. However, if you need to contact An Garda Síochána please consider the following:

- In an emergency always dial 999/112 - You should use this service if a crime or incident is happening now or if anyone is in immediate danger.
- Non-emergency or general enquiries:
- For non-emergency or general enquiries, you can contact your local Garda Station by Telephone and Email;
- Contact details for all Garda stations and key offices are available in the Garda Stations Directory.

Updated HSE public health advice brochures for the Christmas period - By County

On This Page (click to jump to section)

COVID-19 Garda National Vetting Bureau (GNVB) Statistics

COVID-19 Statistics – 9th January, 2021

New Since Last Release - 6th December 2020 to 9th January 2021

COVID-19 Related Fixed Payment Notices (Fines) - up to 13th January, 2021

Latest News from An Garda Síochána

Videos from An Garda Síochána

Crime Prevention Advice

'Social Distancing' | Contacting An Garda Síochána

Domestic Abuse Advice and Videos

An Garda Síochána would like to remind you that the current HSE advice is that that cloth face coverings/masks are superior to visors.  Wear face coverings when you’re shopping, on public transport or when it’s difficult to social distance.

HSE press release

COVID-19 Garda National Vetting Bureau (GNVB) Statistics

COVID-19 Statistics – Up to 9 January 2021

CategoryTotalNo. of Incidents with Proceedings Commenced

Initial Lockdown Period – 8th April up to 28th June, 2020

Breaches of Health Act 1947 (Operation Fanacht etc…)

361

255

Since 29th June, 2020 up to 9th January, 2021

Breaches of Health Act 1947 [1]

126

10

Licensed Premises

  (Operation Navigation – commenced 3rd July, 2020)

398

70

Retail Premises

  (Operation Treoráim – commenced 25th October, 2020)

108

3

Face Covering Regulations

(File to DPP)

12

1

International Travel Regulations

10

1

Up to 9th January 2021

Use of Anti-Spit Guards

118

82

Spitting Assaults on Members

242

138

New Since Last Release - 6th December, 2020 to 9th January, 2021

Category Total No. of Incidents with Proceedings Commenced
Breaches of Health Act 1947[2]380
Licensed Premises (Operation Navigation)630
Retail Premises (Operation Treoraím)10
Face Covering Regulations (File to DPP)20
International Travel Regulations50

COVID-19 Related Fixed Payment Notices (Fines) - up to 13th January, 2021

Category Total IssuedTotal Paid [3]

Summons

(Not Paid)

Face Coverings - Public Transport200
Face Coverings - Certain premises1414
Leaving Home without a Reasonable Excuse3700
Total5314

[1] Excludes Licensed Premises, Retail Premises, Face Coverings and International Travel Regulations.

[2] Excludes Licensed Premises, Retail Premises, Face Coverings and International Travel Regulations.

[3] Fines are due to be paid within 28 days of issue.

Latest News from An Garda Síochána

July 2020

31 July 2020 - Operation Navigation Update - August Bank Holiday Weekend

An Garda Síochána’s Operation Navigation will continue this Bank Holiday weekend with a focus on compliance with the Public Health Regulations, by way of continued visits to Licensed Premises.

Videos from An Garda Síochána

Operational Briefing from Deputy Commissioner Twomey on Policing Plan in Response to COVID-19 Restrictions, 6th January 2021

Click here for the current COVID-19 Level 5 information videos in several languages October 2020

Click here for previous COVID-19 videos in several languages and other videos from March/April 2020

Physical Distancing Saves Lives

Physical distancing is keeping a 2m (6ft) space between you and other people. You should not shake hands or make close contact where possible.

This video demonstrates 2 metres:

Crime Prevention Advice

Home security and dealing with unexpected callers

Please read our leaflets for crime prevention advice on dealing with unexpected callers and home security:

Covid 19 Unexpected Callers Crime Prevention Advice DiversityCovid 19 Home Crime Prevention Advice Diversity
Covid-19 Unexpected Callers Crime Prevention Leaflet (Diversity)Covid-19 Home Crime Prevention Leaflet (Diversity)

These leaflets are available in multiple languages at the end of this page.

Securing Vacant Building Sites

Please read this leaflet and guidance document for crime prevention advice on securing vacant building sites:

Covid-19 Securing Building SitesSecuring Vacant Building Sites FINAL_1
Covid-19 Securing Building Sites LeafletSecuring Building Sites Guidance

'Social Distancing' | Contacting An Garda Síochána

14 March 2020

During this 'Delay' phase of the National response to COVID-19 everyone is asked to work as a community to reduce the impact of COVID-19. Social distancing aims, through a variety of means, to decrease or interrupt the spread of COVID-19. It does this by minimising contact between potentially infected individuals and healthy individuals. Social distancing is keeping a 2m (6ft) space between you and other people. You should not shake hands or make close contact where possible.

All Public Offices of Garda stations remain open. However, if you need to contact An Garda Síochána please consider the following:

  • In an emergency always dial 999/112 - You should use this service if a crime or incident is happening now or if anyone is in immediate danger.
  • Non-emergency or general enquiries:
  • For non-emergency or general enquiries, you can contact your local Garda Station by Telephone and Email.
  • Contact details for all Garda stations and key offices are available in the Garda Stations Directory

Did you know

You can report the theft of property (in certain circumstances) up to a value of €1000 online, please go to this link

In other circumstances, contact An Garda Síochána and we will attend to you as soon as practicable.

If you need to renew a passport, a Passport Card, or apply for a Passport Card this service may be available using the Online Passport Renewal Service.

Other Ways to Report Information to An Garda Síochána

Garda Confidential Line1800 666 111
Traffic Watch1890 205 805
Crimestoppers Freefone1800 250 025
Bribery and Corruption Confidential Reporting Line1800 40 60 80

Information from the HSE on measures in Response to COVID-19 for the General Public can be found here

The most current and up-to-date information from the HSE in relation to COVID-19 for the General Public can be found here

The National Adult Literacy Agency (NALA) has compiled a list of words about coronavirus (also called COVID-19) with plain English explanations. Click here.

#HoldFirm

coronavirus-2Depot

Wearing of Face Coverings by Members of An Garda Síochána

During the COVID-19 pandemic, An Garda Síochána has adopted a dynamic risk assessment approach to the wearing of PPE. These assessments have incorporated the advices of the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET), the Health Service Executive (HSE) and the Garda Chief Medical Officer.

Following the advice issued by the Government on 15 May 2020, and ensuring the health and safety of all Garda personnel, members of An Garda Síochána will wear official-issue face coverings in situations where they are unable to maintain recommended social distancing and may be in close contact with people for more than 15 minutes.

Face coverings must be worn in certain premises, such as shops
 
Face coverings are mandatory in certain premises. This includes shops, shopping centres, libraries, cinemas, theatres, concert halls, bingo halls, museums, nail salons, hairdressers, tattoo and piercing studios, travel agents, laundries, dry cleaners and bookmakers, bus stations and train stations.
 
There is a responsibility on the part of the retailer to encourage an individual to comply with this regulation before Gardaí are called for assistance. 

Face coverings must be worn on public transport
 
Face coverings are mandatory on public transport.  

When will face coverings be worn?

Face coverings will be worn:

  • on busy public transport or in enclosed indoor public areas / confined spaces (i.e. retail outlets);
  • while travelling in patrol cars in pairs (a maximum of two people have been assigned to a car);
  • in situations where engineering controls (screens, etc.) are not present, close contact is likely and social distancing is not possible.

When will face coverings not be worn?

Face coverings will not be worn:

  • in single occupancy patrol vehicles;
  • on outdoor patrol duty, including on mountain-bikes / motorcycles;
  • when social distancing can be maintained (for example, at checkpoints / open areas / foot patrols).

The use of face coverings is not a substitute for:

  • good hand hygiene
  • respiratory etiquette
  • physical distancing

The above recommendations remains the most effective ways of avoiding transmission or catching COVID-19.