Thursday, 2 December 2021
Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection
112. To ask the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection the steps she has taken to improve ventilation in the office buildings of her Department; if air cleaning and or purification systems have been installed in 2021; and if not, the plans to install same in 2022. [59728/21]
Effective and efficient ventilation has been identified as a protective measure against COVID-19 since the beginning of the pandemic along with other key infection prevention and control measures.
The majority of offices in my Department are naturally ventilated and staff have been encouraged to keep windows open subject to acceptable comfort limits and to keep air conditioning systems operating in buildings which are mechanically ventilated. All of our mechanical ventilation systems are regularly maintained by professional engineers and kept in good order.
CO2 monitors are used to assess the quality of air and all readings have been within acceptable ranges. Good quality fresh air is essential in offices of my Department and staff are not located in offices where this cannot be achieved.
Additional air cleaning or purification systems, beyond those installed as standard in mechanical ventilation systems to remove large particles, are designed for use in areas with poor ventilation and air quality and they are not required in my Department.