News & Media

Councils should employ wardens to maintain social distancing – Tuffy

6 July 2020

Statement by Cllr Joanna Tuffy
Joanna Tuffy

City and County Councils should employ social distancing wardens according to Cllr. Joanna Tuffy, Labour Councillor on South Dublin County Council.


Cllr. Tuffy said:

“Council social distancing wardens could help prevent the type of large gatherings that have occurred over the weekend outside pubs in Dublin City Centre. The role would be similar to school wardens, who operate under the authority of local councils and the Garda Siochána, and who have powers conferred on them to ensure the safety of children.

 

“Another model that could be used for social distancing wardens are the community wardens that are used by some local authorities. Social distancing wardens could work with members of the Garda Siochána to ensure social distancing is facilitated and maintained. 

 

“They could, if necessary, be given powers under legislation or bye-laws, to give them authority to ask groups to disperse.  This would be akin to the legislation that has given school wardens powers to stop traffic. However, their role, as is the case with school and community wardens would be largely a persuasive one. School wardens that are currently out of work could be employed in this role during the summer months.

 

Tuffy continued:

 

“The presence of social wardens on streets in towns and city centres would help maintain awareness around the need to continue to maintain social distancing as part of the strategy to prevent new outbreaks of Covid-19.