Childcare providers are refusing to accept children for up to two weeks after they return from holidays 1 month ago

Childcare providers are refusing to accept children for up to two weeks after they return from holidays

You might be in for a surprise if you are returning from holidays abroad with children this summer.

Despite the introduction of the EU Digital COVID cert this week, a number of creches across the country have written to parents warning that they are keeping their 13-day quarantine rules in place.

Which essentially means children cannot come back to creche for two weeks after they have returned from foreign holidays.

Speaking on Newstalk and The Pat Kenny Show earlier this week, the Chair of the Federation of Early Childhood Providers, Elaine Dunne, said some services feel the rules remain necessary due to the spread of the Delta variant, and that each childcare provider has its own procedures and policies aimed at keeping staff and parents safe.

Dunne explained that a “good number of services” have been shut down due to Delta outbreaks, with the HSE warning that further closures are likely, as new figures show that children account for a third of all new infections recorded in the past fortnight.

“You have to think about, if the Delta variant is very high in an area in Dublin or in any other county around the country then we have to stick rigidly to our policies and procedures,” Dunne explains.

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“We do the same with the winter vomiting bug or any other kind of bug that comes in – you have policies and procedures around that. All we are trying to do here is to keep everybody safe and well and to keep everything running smoothly."

However, says Dunne, the Delta variant is a “completely different kettle of fish” to other strains as she urges parents “just to bear with us for a couple of months until we see where this Delta variant is going.”

“We we are being told, just let everybody in; there is nothing to worry about with children. Yet the HSE are clearly stating that people under the age of 18 are getting this."

Of some creches' decision to keep the 13-day quarantine rule in place, she says:

“It is not just keeping ourselves safe, it is keeping the families safe and it is keeping the workforce going and keeping the economy going. If we take away all those policies and procedures, we don’t know what is going to happen."