A local TD has strongly criticised the provision by the government of ventilators in schools during the pandemic as disappointing.
Independent TD Marian Harkin described the advice from the Department of Education to open windows as ‘the ladybird introduction to ventilation.
The Sligo Leitrim TD says there is an urgency around making sure that schools are safe places to attend.
Deputy Harkin raised her concerns while speaking in support of People Before Profit’s Workplace Ventilation (Covid-19) Bill 2021.
It was claimed during the debate on the motion that Ireland sets standards for clean air in chicken coops but not in schools.
People Before Profit TD Paul Murphy, who brought forward the bill, said we would not be able to get on top of this pandemic without urgent action to make sure that schools and workplaces are properly ventilated.
He said every classroom should be given a Hepa filter, which the Dáil heard would cost the State about €12m.
Fellow People Before Profit TD Bríd Smith said Hepa filters are not by themselves a method to get rid of Covid but should be part of a suite of measures.
Deputy Harkin said the bill provides a good basis and believes it will help make Irish schools safe.