Hairdressers and shops set to reopen in early May for people who have been fully vaccinated
A glimmer of light at the end of a very long tunnel.
Hairdressers and shops could reopen at the beginning of May for fully vaccinated people.
According to proposals, members of the public who have been fully vaccinated against Covid-19 may be able to return to non-essential shops and avail of services like hairdressers from early next month.
The Irish Examiner reports that the phased reopening of such businesses could be part of a so-called "vaccine bonus," which will allow people who have received their full jab to re-enter society early.
The government is apparently considering introducing such measures ahead of the expected ease of nationwide restrictions later on in the summer.
There had originally been discussions that hairdressers and salons would begin to reopen on a phased basis from as early as 4 May, the date from which current government guidance suggests the recommencement of personal services will be considered, as well as the phased return of non-essential retail services.
This comes after the Irish Hairdressers Federation urged the government to introduce these very measures. Last week, the federation issued a statement mentioning the mental health benefits of their services, particularly for those who have been cocooning since last March.
"Elderly people have been cocooning for the past year, and it would such a great boost for their mental health and general wellbeing to be able to pop down to the salon and talk to people in a safe, controlled environment," the federation said.
"They get out of the house, get their hair done, feel refreshed and come away feeling great."
As well as this, the federation also urged the government to allow salons to open for fully vaccinated healthcare workers.
"Not a day goes by where we don’t think about our heroic frontline healthcare workers have been under suffering under huge strain and trauma with this crisis for the past year," the statement read.
“I don’t know anybody who would deny them the boost they deserve, and it would be great if they could enjoy a trip to their hair salon or barber.”
Restrictions are set to ease slightly on April 12 with the removal of the 5km travel rule, the full return of schools, permission to meet one other household in an outdoor setting (not in a residential garden) and the resumption of all residential construction as well as early-learning and childcare projects.