Dáil debates

Thursday, 21 May 2020

Outbreaks of Covid-19 in Meat Processing Plants: Statements


Photo of Michael CreedMichael Creed (Cork North West, Fine Gael)

They say that the devil can cite scripture for his own purpose. I certainly would not be comparing Deputy Bríd Smith to the devil, far from it. However, I think she has selectively quoted what I said. The priority agreed by this House was that the agrifood sector was an essential service and that it was crucial to keep supermarket shelves stocked, to keep people with a supply of safe food. It was agreed collectively in this House that these people do essential work. However, I always said that in so doing, the primacy of those workers' health and welfare was not to be compromised. The record will show that on multiple occasions, at any time I have been asked questions about this issue. The Deputy may say that I have or the Government has failed utterly and I suspect nothing that I can say here will change her mind about that. We will agree to differ. However, I think there should be some reassurance, perhaps if the Deputy is open to being reassured, that the HSE is, in terms of the outbreak control team both at local and national level-----


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