Statement – Restaurants Association of Ireland 29th June 2021

Restaurant Sector astounded and angered by a further delay of possible two weeks to reopening Indoors  

Allowing vaccinated customers only to dine indoors is flawed, unworkable, discriminatory and currently illegal

The Summer is now lost for thousands of businesses across the state.   

The Restaurants Association of Ireland is astounded at the Government’s decision this evening to further delay the reopening of indoor dining by two weeks for the remainder of hospitality; restaurants cafes and gastropubs, whilst hotels and B&Bs have been open for almost a month. 

The proposal to develop a system that would permit only those who are fully vaccinated against Covid-19 to eat and drink inside bars and restaurants we believe to be discriminatory and unworkable. Ireland is not currently technologically ready to operate the EU approved Green Travel Certificate and yet there is a proposal to operate services based on vaccines at a national level. 

CEO Adrian Cummins: “Restaurant, Pub and Café Owners will now be placed in the unenviable, complex and difficult position of allowing vaccinated customers enter indoors and restricting non vaccinated customers to outdoor dining. Such a practice of refusing access to goods and services in currently illegal under equality acts. The hospitality sector contains a diverse range of workers by age with front of house mostly the unvaccinated age groups, who will now be asked to refuse access to their peers? This makes no sense and will restrict indoor dining to those in the 40 – 60 age groups who are fully vaccinated whilst the hotel across the street has families and guests dining indoors since 2nd June.  

We are calling on the Government to reopen Indoor Hospitality with immediate effect in line with our colleagues in Northern Ireland and across Europe.” 

The reopening of International Travel means that you can dine in restaurant in Portugal or have a Pint in Spain unprohibited from the 19 July. Ireland has been observing the Delta variant activity in other EU countries but once again there is a plan to restrict rather than track and trace to prevent its spread as the WHO recommends.

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