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25/09/20 - Cathaoirleach and Mayor join in cross border safety message to curb the spread of COVID-19

The Cathaoirleach of Donegal County Council along with the Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council have joined together in calling for compliance with new restrictions by urging people in both Council areas to do all they can to curb the spread of the COVID-19 across the North West region.


The Cathaoirleach of Donegal County Council Cllr Rena Donaghey along with the Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council Cllr Brian Tierney are pleading with people in both areas to adhere to the new guidelines introduced by the respective governments, saying we must do everything we can to prevent the further spread of the virus.


Last night our Taoiseach announced that Donegal will be placed on Level 3 restrictions for a three week period while earlier in the week the NI Executive introduced additional restrictions across all parts of Northern Ireland including Derry and Strabane in an effort to reduce the spread of COVID-19.


In a joint statement the Cathaoirleach and Mayor appealed to the people of the North West to be responsible at this critical juncture.


They said:  “We fully understand how difficult the past number of months have been for many. We have been separated from our loved ones, prevented from paying our respects to our dead and restrictions placed on our social interactions, unfortunately the rate of infection in both our Council areas is causing us great concern and we need your continued support and co-operation to get through it. We must note the alarming increase in positive tests and keep this in mind in everything we do.


“We all have a responsibility to keep ourselves and others safe. Please adhere to social distancing measures, wash your hands regularly, wear a face mask where required and reduce your social interactions.  We appeal to you all to use your common sense on issues like travel, shopping and socialising, work from home if you can, and ask yourself how important a journey or other planned activity is and how much additional risk would it bring to you or others and most importantly reduce your contact with people.  By taking these steps and acting responsibly we can all play our part in preventing the spread of the virus across our region.”


An Cathaoirleach Cllr Rena Donaghey said news that Donegal has been placed on Level 3 restrictions was disappointing but the infection rate across the county was extremely worrying. She said the restrictions are necessary and are a proportionate response to the increasing number of positive cases.


She welcomed the joint approach taken by the two Councils in addressing the issue and said it was important that they worked on a cross border and collaborative way to share messaging to keep people safe.


“We must take a step back and co-operate fully with the regulations and do what is necessary to keep people safe. We must continue to maintain social distancing, wash our hands and wear a face covering when required. I would also encourage people in both Council areas to download the contact tracing app and, should you be advised to take a test, please do so as quickly as possible and follow all the guidance in relation to self-isolating and quarantine.”


Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council Cllr Brian Tierney said we had reached a critical stage in dealing with the pandemic. He said while the restrictions were disappointing, they were necessary as the figures show a marked increase in positive cases in both Council areas over the past week. He said it was important people pulled together in the coming days and weeks to get the numbers down and to do all they can to curb the spread of the virus.


He said the decision by the respective Governments to extend the restrictions was made in the interest of the health and safety of the wider community and in response to a recent rise in the number of cases in these areas.


He said: “We all need to do our part. The people of Derry Strabane and Donegal Council areas must unite in the fight against the spread of this virus and we take a responsible cross border approach to this. I am appealing to those of you living in Derry Strabane and Donegal to adhere to the guidelines and to act responsibly by reducing your contacts between people in household settings and social interactions. Positive cases are increasing and the onus is on us to do all we can to adhere to the guidelines and do all we can to protect ourselves, our family and our community.”’

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