EVERYONE SHOULD BE ALLOWED TO REOPEN- BUT WE MUST BE VIGILANT

EVERYONE SHOULD BE ALLOWED TO REOPEN- BUT WE MUST BE VIGILANT

10 July 2020

With a large portion of our industry now reopened with extensive risk assessment and mitigation in place, Hospitality Ulster is extremely disappointed that the NI Executive has so far failed to provide a date for the reopening of wet led pubs (wet sales only indoors).

 

There is an extremely strong sense of frustration among wet pubs, who feel like they have been left behind as premises who serve food are given the green light- with many publicans wondering why they can’t at least get clarity on a target date to open their doors under industry guidelines.

 

Despite restaurants, hotels and beer gardens opening in Northern Ireland on Friday 3 July, England fully open, and dates provided for the reopening of the remainder of the industry in the Republic of Ireland and Scotland in July, it is extremely regrettable that the NI Executive has failed to follow suit.

 

Hospitality Ulster has written to every MLA urgently calling on the NI Executive to provide a reopening date or financial assistance now, highlighting that without an early reopening date, the sad fact is that businesses will go under, resulting in thousands of staff having to be made redundant.

 

Without urgent action this will simply be unavoidable.

 

It is simply unfair to keep them all closed, rather than close individual premises that ignore the safety procedures.

 

We would also take this opportunity to remind everyone that is open to be vigilant, and ensure all social distancing and hygiene requirements are rigorously observed.

 

The future of our industry and your individual businesses is in your hands, as any spike could result in a complete closure, or indeed individual closure of businesses found to be the source- with huge reputational damage.

 

Last weekend showed that we can reopen responsibly, and Hospitality Ulster will continue to support every business that is implementing the government guidance. But we will not support any businesses that deliberately ignore the guidance, putting lives and the livelihoods of other businesses at risk.

 

As we approach another weekend and into what is a holiday period for many, I appeal to each and every business to redouble your efforts and ensure the continued rigorous application of all COVID-19 measures to reduce the spread of the virus.