Restaurants call for ‘circuit breaker’ lockdown to save Christmas



Restaurants are calling for a “circuit breaker” lockdown to help save the industry and reopen it fully for the Christmas season.

Restaurants Association of Ireland (RAI) chief executive, Adrian Cummins, said the hospitality sector is effectively already under a lockdown, with indoor dining banned around the country in order to curb the spread of Covid-19.

The group is in favour of the short and strict lockdown described as a “circuit breaker,” if it means Covid-19 case numbers will reduce and the industry can trade indoors again during the winter period.

“We are currently in a lockdown phase for our restaurants and hospitality where all indoor dining is banned at the moment, so effectively our industry is at Level 4,” Mr Cummins said.

“We’re saying to the Government very clearly, give us a roadmap to opening our businesses for Christmas and save Christmas, so we can give clarity for our customers and our staff.”

The RAI chief said the Christmas period is a vital source of income for hospitality businesses and many will not survive if they are unable to open for the period.

“It’s critical and vital that our industry is open for Christmas from the first week of December right through, because 30 per cent of our income comes in at Christmas,” he said.

“If we’re not open for Christmas, well it’s game over for 50 per cent of businesses right across the country.”


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