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29 Nov 2021

New bank holiday dedicated to frontline staff may just be a one-off, report suggests

New bank holiday dedicated to Frontline staff may just be a one-off, report suggests

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A new bank holiday dedicated to the hard work of frontline workers for their efforts during the pandemic may be a one-off event, rather than an annual day of rest.

The Irish Independent reported that there is increasing consensus around targeting Monday January 31 as the bank holiday to tie in with St Brigid’s Day which falls on Tuesday, February 1.

It follows after An Taoiseach Micheál Martin said yesterday that he "did not rule out" the new bank holiday coinciding with St Brigid’s Day.

He made the comments while speaking at an event commemorating Wolfe Tone at an event in Bodenstown in County Kildare.

The paper also reported that there is some resistance, especially from employer groups, to introducing a permanent new bank holiday.

Journalist Philip Ryan explained: "A final decision has not been taken on when the holiday should be held, but senior Government figures yesterday indicated linking it to St Brigid’s Day is the most likely date."

Another option that the Independent said that the govt are considering is to make St Patrick’s Day a four-day weekend, as events for the national holiday have been cancelled for the last two years in a row due to the pandemic.

A separate newspaper, The Sunday Times newspaper, has claimed that February 1 will indeed become Ireland's tenth public holiday, although this news is yet to be confirmed by the govt.

Previously, an online petition was signed by more than 12,000 people to make the event a bank holiday.

The campaign received backing from the Women's Parliamentary Caucus, in addition to the Green Party and public figures like broadcaster Joe Duffy and singer Imelda May.

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