Justice Ministers: Stay local and save lives

Date published: 07 May 2020

Justice Minister Naomi Long and her Irish counterpart, Minister for Justice and Equality, Charlie Flanagan TD have today stressed the need to avoid complacency in the fight to slow the spread of COVID-19.

Naomi Long said: “We are heading towards a bank holiday weekend in Northern Ireland and I know how tempting it can be to set off on a day trip or perhaps to a holiday home but we really do need people to continue to stay at home.

“The vast majority of people are doing that - and they are saving lives. Now is not the time for complacency if we are to win the battle against what is an invisible and particularly vicious enemy.

“I have spoken with Minister Flanagan and we are both impressed by the continuing cooperation between the PSNI and An Garda Síochána as they work to keep people safe and discourage people on both sides of the border from travelling excessively for non-essential journeys.

“The message is simple - please stay at home unless your journey is essential.”

Minister Flanagan said: “I am heartened by the high level of compliance there has been with public health restrictions aimed at reducing the spread of Covid-19 and saving lives.  This has been an unprecedented effort by the public and by frontline services, North and South.

“I know that as the weeks have passed, some people may be finding the situation harder. But it is just as important as ever that we listen to the health experts and continue to respect the rules and stay at home, other than for essential journeys.

“I am delighted with the close cooperation between the Garda Commissioner and the PSNI Chief Constable and I commend the tremendous cooperation between officers at all ranks in the PSNI and An Garda Síochána during this public health emergency.”

Notes to editors: 

 All media enquiries should be directed to the Department of Justice Press Office via email on press.office@justice-ni.x.gsi.gov.uk for out of hours please contact the duty press officer on 028 9037 8110.

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