People in Ireland to be fined for not wearing face masks
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People in Ireland to be fined for not wearing face masks

PEOPLE in Ireland who don't wear face masks where necessary could be fined up to €100.

Gardai have been granted new powers to enforce people to wear face coverings in keeping with Covid-19 public health guidelines, and fines ranging from €20-100 could be handed out in order to do so.

Health Minister Stephen Donnelly announced that a 'penalty table' is to be introduced, which should be enough for gardai to enforce the rules.

"I will be introducing legislation shortly which will add a table of penalties, for example, a €20, €50 or €100 fine for certain things," he said.

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"We will be looking at bringing in a new schedule of fines including for other compliance measures.

"The flip side is that it does mean enforcement powers are less, there will not be penalties attached to house parties. However, the gardaí have done a very good job and most people can be encouraged to comply [with Covid-19 restrictions] and the gardaí do have other public order powers that can be used where appropriate."

The Garda Representative Association had previously expressed concerns over the legality of entering homes to break up house parties, adding that legislation would have to be "carefully teased out and robust".