News & Media

Targeted package of additional supports needed for wet pubs

28 August 2020

Statement by Aodhán Ó Ríordáin TD
Spokesperson on Education, Enterprise and Trade
Aodhan

-40% top up to the restart grant too little too late

Labour Enterprise Spokesperson Aodhán Ó Ríordáin said the Government need to announce a targeted package of supports for wet pubs immediately and that the 40% top up to the restart grant is too little too late for businesses that will have to remain closed for more than half the year.

Deputy Ó Ríordáin said:

“The Government need to move to announce supports for wet pubs immediately. Wet pubs have played their part and will have to remain closed in line with public health advice for more than half the year and unless they receive additional financial supports immediately many will not be able to reopen.

“Warm words from the Tánaiste and Government will not guarantee the survival of our pubs which are at the centre of many communities and employ thousands of people are the country. The 40% top up to the restart grant is the same deal that has been offered to businesses in Kildare that have been forced to close for a month due to localised restrictions. These businesses will have been closed for more than six months and the Government will have to go much further to guarantee their future viability. They need to step in immediately with a comprehensive package of supports to protect livelihoods in the industry.

“The rise in cases of Covid-19 in the last few weeks concerns us all and if the public health advice dictates that pubs are to remain closed for the foreseeable future, the industry needs certainty from Government otherwise the vast majority may never reopen.

“The Government need to extend the Temporary Wage Subsidy for workers in this industry and put in place a special restart grant specifically for the wet pubs that have been ordered to remain closed. If action isn’t taken soon, there will be mass unemployment among hospitality workers, the majority of whom are young people.