News 2020

 

Title:  Mountaineering Ireland lobbies at national level to open access to the outdoors
Date:  06/11/2020

Mountaineering Ireland lobbies at national level to open access to the outdoors

 

With restrictions across the Republic of Ireland at Level 5 on the Plan for Living with Covid-19, Mountaineering Ireland has requested that Government consider the following in the upcoming review of the current restrictions:

  • Allow for access to the outdoors for physical activity and wellbeing to be included in Levels 3, 4 and 5 of the Plan for Living with Covid-19.
  • Allow people travel for physical activity and wellbeing beyond the 5km and county boundary once the following conditions are adhered to:
    • Social distancing of 2 metres is maintained
    • Transport is in household pods only
    • People travel directly to and from their chosen location for exercise
    • Safe hygiene practices are maintained

Mountaineering Ireland’s Chief Executive Officer, Murrough McDonagh noted: “Those involved in outdoor recreation activities understand the considerable benefits for people in having access to the outdoors, now more so than ever. Our members have voiced their concerns about not having access to hillwalking and climbing beyond 5km from home for the next number of weeks. Allowing for outdoor recreation activities, once carried out in a safe and responsible way, within single households, does not appear to represent a risk in the transmission of the Covid-19 disease. We have requested the support of Sport Ireland and asked the Government at national level to make changes in Levels 3, 4, and 5 of the current plan to allow access beyond 5km from home and beyond county boundaries. For example, since the 18th September, the 1.3 million people living in Co. Dublin, have been asked to stay within their county and now within 5km of their home for exercise. In an outdoor recreation context, we are seeing huge numbers converging on the very limited public spaces within Co. Dublin.  Allowing people to responsibly engage in physical activity and wellbeing in the outdoors, in locations with far fewer people present, would appear to be a safer approach moving forward. What we are asking is that the Plan for Living with Covid-19 be adapted to allow people enjoy the outdoors in a meaningful and responsible way.”

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