Reports are circling today that ministers are split on easing the 5km travel restriction.
It’s understood that while some believe the incidence rate is not low enough to start lifting restrictions, others feel the Government will lose public buy-in without a change.
Speaking on the topic is Newstalk reporter Barry White who took to the streets to ask the public their opinion:
"I think [the lockdown] is necessary as it's keeping us safe," one woman said.
"But at the same time, I live in Dublin and work in Kildare in retail so haven't worked since Christmas."
"It's restrictive and it's difficult," another woman voiced. "But it's a difficult time so we have to kind of meet the challenge. That's how I feel about it."
"It's just dragging on a bit now," one young man said. "The guards are putting out fines left, right and centre but it's so hard to enforce at the same time.
"It [the 5km limit] is too small. It has to go."
Older vs Younger
Back in the studio, Pat Kenny asked Whyte how many fines have been issued of late:
"To date, Gardaí have issued over 10,000 fines for people leaving home without a reasonable excuse.
"The majority of these fines have been handed out in Dublin and to young people – over 77% of these fines have been handed out to people between 18 and 35.
"Only 1% of the fines were handed out to people over 65%.
"And this is what I discovered in the city centre yesterday. Older people are keeping to the 5km limit while younger people are breaking the restriction regularly."
Another woman Whyte interviewed said: "I know there were people my age out and about for Paddy's Day during the week and people from Dublin who were in Galway for the day, too.
"I'm sick of it but it seems like nobody else is."
"We need to start trusting people to exercise their own judgement," County Clare TD Michael McNamara posited. "Particularly as the weather improves, we're going to see how people gather outdoors. But also we do need to start trusting people and maybe educating people more rather than just prescribing rules again and again."
There's no doubt that people are travelling outside the limits, Whyte continues.
"I have spoken to a number of people who have been fined, but it seems to me that those who have been issued with one have told Gardaí the truth when they're stopped at a checkpoint about where they're going rather than lying.
"For instance, I spoke to people who headed for a swim to the 40foot in Dún Laoghaire which is outside their 5km limit. They were stopped by the Gardaí to say they had been for a swim and received a fine the next day.
"But if they had told Gardaí they had been doing a food shop or were even visiting a grave, they probably would have got off with it."
Main image: Covid-19 Pandemic (Coronavirus), Ireland. Photograph: Sasko Lazarov / RollingNews.ie