Executive ministers have agreed to close schools, pubs and restaurants after a rising infection rate across the six counties. In a statement to the Assembly, DUP leader Arlene Foster expressed concern for the rise in cases across Northern Ireland, urging the public to take on the role of breaking the chain of infection.
She said: We all have a role to break this chain, and it’s important that we all understand this.
“People pass COVID onto each other, and that happens in a variety of settings.
“Limiting our social contacts will play a role in breaking the chain.
“We have already asked everyone to assist with this by not gathering in domestic settings and that has been taken forward in regulations.
“Fundamentally the education of our young people is a right and absolutely their life chances need to be protected.”
She went on to say “we are only taking the route of the Halloween break as was and a number of extra days” because of the impact of closing schools on children.”
She continued: “”As across other jurisdictions the issue of schools, along with other considerations, will be kept under continuous review by the Executive in the weeks and months ahead.”
Schools will be expected to reopen on November 2.
What are the rules now in Northern Ireland?
Pubs and restaurants will close for four weeks, with the exception of takeaways and deliveries, while schools will close on Monday for two weeks – one of which will cover the half-term Halloween break.
Under the new restrictions, retail outlets will remain open, as will gyms for individual training.
Churches will also remain open and it is understood a 25-person limit will be placed on funerals and weddings, but wedding receptions are prohibited.
People should work from home unless unable to do so, and are urged not to take unnecessary journeys.