Apologies have been received from Deputy Martin Browne. Members now have the option of being physically present in the committee room or joining via Microsoft Teams with the proviso that, for meetings held in public session, this must be done from their offices in Leinster House. Members may not participate from outside the parliamentary precincts. If joining by Microsoft Teams, they should mute their microphones when not contributing and should use the "raise hand" function to indicate. Members should note that messages sent to the meeting chat are visible to all online. Speaking slots will be prioritised for members of the committee.
Members and all attendees are asked to exercise personal responsibility by protecting themselves and others from the risk of contracting Covid-19. They are strongly advised to practice good hand hygiene. Note that seats have been removed from the room in order to facilitate social distancing. I urge members not to move chairs from their current positions. They should also maintain appropriate social distancing after the meeting. Masks, preferably of medical grade, must be worn at all times during the meeting, except when speaking. I ask members for their full co-operation on this issue.