- ‘Extremely unhelpful’ that no date agreed for reopening
- Government proposal to allow indoor dining for fully vaccinated people is ‘unrealistic and unworkable in practice’
Tuesday, June 29th, 2021. Retail Excellence, the largest representative body for the retail industry in Ireland, has said that the Government’s decision to postpone the reopening of indoor dining was a “hammer-blow” for the hospitality sector.
Indoor dining was set to resume on Monday, July 5th yet a rise in cases of the Delta variant of Covid-19 has led to this postponement.
Retail Excellence, which also represents over 300 cafes and coffee-shops throughout the country, said that the decision would have a significant knock-on effect for the retail industry in Ireland and that it was “extremely unhelpful” that the Government had not given a timeframe for the delay. It also said that it remained to be seen how a plan to allow indoor dining for fully vaccinated people would work.
Speaking today, Fergal Doyle, Board Member with Retail Excellence, said: “This delay is a hammer-blow for the hospitality industry in Ireland and will have significant ramifications for business owners and staff around the country. We understand that this is a tough decision for the Government to have to make, but this does not lessen the impact on business owners who are fighting for their survival after a terrible year and it is extremely unhelpful that we do not have a timeframe for a reopening plan.
“The hospitality and retail industries are dependent on each other in many respects, and this decision will have a huge knock-on effect on retailers while coffee-shops and cafes in particular are unable to operate indoors. This must be the very last delay for a beleaguered industry that will need major support from the Government in the coming months.”
He said that a plan to allow indoor dining for fully vaccinated people was bizarre. “It is not clear how the Government plans to make this work, especially seeing as many staff in the hospitality sector will not be vaccinated themselves by the time this plan would be rolled out. This plan is bizarre and unrealistic.”