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Taoiseach says plan being developed to ease current restrictions

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Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has this evening (Thursday) said that the lifting of current restrictions will be “slow and gradual" and will be "done in a stepwise, tiered manner”.

Speaking in the Dáil, he said that people want to know when things are going to go back to a new normal.

“I know the lockdown is difficult and people are feeling frustrated, cooped up, even trapped, but we must keep doing what we are doing because it is working. We owe it to those who are fighting the virus every day and we owe it to the memory of those who have been lost. As a country, we owe it to each other.

“I can inform the Dáil that a plan is being developed to ease the lockdown, a roadmap to reopen Ireland, a roadmap to what will be a new normal. Unfortunately for those who would like an immediate return to a pre-COVID-19 world, the easement of the current restrictions will be slow and gradual and will be done in a stepwise, tiered manner. It will require continuous effort to suppress and control the virus. Therefore, the lifting of restrictions will not necessarily mirror the manner in which they were escalated.”

Public health and safety and the healthcare capacity will continue to be the foundation for decision making, he explained.

“Our five criteria are as follows: the progress of the disease, healthcare capacity and resilience, testing and contact tracing capacity, the ability to shield and care for at-risk groups and the risk of secondary morbidity and mortality due to the restrictions themselves.

As we manage the gradual lifting of restrictions, we will prioritise public health advice and give careful consideration on how best to mitigate and manage the economic and other health and social impacts.”

Any changes to the restrictions will be made every two to four weeks because the Government needs to leave a period between changes to assess accurately their impact.

“We will intervene earlier if things appear to be going off track. Restrictions may have to be reintroduced if it looks as if the virus is going to surge back. We expect to have this plan completed tomorrow (Friday) for approval by Cabinet.”

 

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The tax you’re really paying for your health

By Brian Foley from Activate Fitness With the budget just squared away, there’s always an air of “how did I do out of it?” In Ireland, we enjoy a public healthcare system which is touted to become a universal healthcare system. Maybe “enjoy” is the wrong word. We have it, and we use it, and, […]

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By Brian Foley from Activate Fitness

With the budget just squared away, there’s always an air of “how did I do out of it?”

In Ireland, we enjoy a public healthcare system which is touted to become a universal healthcare system. Maybe “enjoy” is the wrong word.

We have it, and we use it, and, of course we pay for it. We justify the constant ratcheting-up of our tax burden to pay for rising health-care costs. That tax is on our wallets.

We also pay another type of tax: When we’re unhealthy, we don’t get to do the things we like. When we’re overweight, we don’t always say “YES!” when our kids ask to go to the swimming pool.
When we’re unfit, we don’t take our buddy’s invitation for a weekend hiking and camping trip. We can’t start jogging because our knees hurt; can’t lift weights because our back hurts; can’t cut down calories because we feel we need the energy.

Those things are taxes. Physical taxes, but they’re not the worst taxes we pay.

The worst tax we pay is the mental tax.

When we’re self-conscious about our fitness or health, we don’t want to start exercising. We don’t want to look dumb or fail.

We don’t want to start a new lifestyle because our families will say “good for you”, because they know we need it, or they’ll say “you don’t need that …” and lie. Or they’ll roll their eyes because they know we’ve failed before.

When we’ve been away from the gym for four months, we don’t want to do that first workout because we’re going to be last. It’s going to suck and we might get embarrassed.

SELF IMPOSED TAX

The Government makes us pay financial tax, but the other two – physical and mental – are self-imposed.

No one cares if you’re slow.

No one cares if you finish last.

No one cares if you blow your nutrition this week and have to start all over again.

You’d stop caring about what others thought about you if you realised how rarely they actually do.

Everyone thinks about themselves, mostly. That’s the tax they’re paying – and most of us overpay.

We’re taxed enough. Stop worrying about what you look like and start caring about what makes you feel good.

If you’d like to start taking steps in the right direction with your health and fitness, call in for a free consultation with us at Activate. Visit www.activate.ie/free-intro for more information.

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Tractor run raises €500 for charity

By Sean Moriarty Members of Killarney Valley Vintage and Classic Club raised €500 for the Kerry Mental Health Association during their first tractor run since April 2019. 30 tractors took part on Sunday including two rare Ford 3000s from 1974 and an even rarer Zetor Crystal from 1980. Departing from the club’s new ‘Vintage Shed’ […]

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By Sean Moriarty

Members of Killarney Valley Vintage and Classic Club raised €500 for the Kerry Mental Health Association during their first tractor run since April 2019.

30 tractors took part on Sunday including two rare Ford 3000s from 1974 and an even rarer Zetor Crystal from 1980.

Departing from the club’s new ‘Vintage Shed’ on Lewis Road, the convoy travelled to the communications mast near Coolick in Kilcummin, where participants enjoyed views of the wider Castleisland district and Killarney Valley.

“Some of the drivers were never up there before and they were amazed with the views across the two valleys,” organiser Tom Leslie told the Killarney Advertiser.

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