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Coronavirus: 'Good chance of moving to phase two' on schedule, says government

Elizabeth Canavan from the Department of the Taoiseach.

There is a good chance that we can move into phase two as scheduled, according to the Government.

The country is due to enter the next phase of the lifting of restrictions on Monday, June 8.

The government has also issued new guidelines on the reopening of childcare facilities.

Although there were reports of a number of breaches of guidelines over the Bank Holiday weekend, the government says that the majority of people were compliant.

More restrictions are due to be lifted next Monday as the country enters phase two.

Elizabeth Canavan from the Department of the Taoiseach says they are hopeful that can happen as scheduled.

“As we approach the end of phase one of the roadmap, we can see that the efforts everyone has made are continuing to benefit our communities,” she said.

“Hopefully that gives us a very good chance of moving to phase two as scheduled, if we can keep it up for a few more days.”

The government has also issued new guidelines on the reopening of childcare facilities on June 29.

The children of healthcare and essential workers will be prioritised along with those with disabilities and children who are disadvantaged.

Ms Canavan says that the play pod model will be implemented.

“The purpose of play pods is to limit the number of people a child has contact with, to facilitate tracing and to support close positive interactions between children and their caregivers.”

The government also confirmed this morning that women returning to work from maternity leave will be able to avail of Temporary Covid-19 Wage Subsidy Scheme from June 12 and it will be backdated to March 26.

Meanwhile, a further [burl=1002939]36,200 people have returned to work in the last week[/bur], with numbers claiming the Pandemic Unemployment Payment now down to 543,200.

That figure is down from a peak of 598,00 at the beginning of May, with the weekly cost of the payment at €190 million.