Cork South West Deputy Christopher O’Sullivan is calling on the government to provide supports for the hotel industry to pay towards the extra staffing costs required to maintain hygiene and social distancing standards during the reopening phase of the pandemic.
“While I’m very happy businesses can reopen, I’m concerned over some of the official advice and what that means for businesses who have to deal with the financial side of reopening,” Deputy O’Sullivan said.
“Businesses have been hit hard by the pandemic. Social distancing and hygiene rules required to open up will put more financial strain on businesses who will have to hire extra staff while having fewer customers.”
“I’ve asked the government to provide extra financial supports to these businesses during the reopening phase so they can hire the staff to maintain their safety standards while confidence returns to their customer base.
“More specifically, I’m looking for a government contribution towards staffing and secondly I’m looking for grant aide towards the provision of PPE gear and sanitising measures which for some business might be cost prohibitive.”
Fáilte Ireland on Tuesday published its guidelines for businesses reopening safely over the next few weeks.
While the advice is comprehensive and covers a lot of sectors of the tourism trade, one thing that is apparent is certainty is still needed around two-metre and one-metre social-distancing so businesses can effectively financially plan when making changes to their premises and staffing.
“It’s clear businesses will need supports so they can pay for the staff and PPE needed to encourage customers back into their premises,” Deputy O’Sullivan said.