A Donegal county councillor has called for a booze ban on off-licenses and supermarkets to stop the spread of Covid.
Cllr Michael Naughton said such restrictions should be considered if clusters of Covid-19 are being traced back to house parties and gatherings.
The Letterkenny hotelier said restrictions or a temporary nationwide ban from such premises should be considered if the country has to enter another lockdown.
He added “If house parties and street parties are reasons for the spread of Covid-19 cases you have to go to the root of the problem.
“You have to ask what is fuelling the parties? And what is fuelling these parties is the sale of cheap alcohol from off-licences and supermarkets.”
Cllr Naughton said he is calling on the relevant agencies and bodies to come together to address this, to have a discussion about how we can implement some form of temporary regulation, either in reducing opening times and closing the off-licences earlier or have a limit in the amount of alcohol sold per person.
He added “We have heard all week in the media about young people gathering for parties and anti-social behaviour but I have not heard anyone address the elephant in the room, which is the off-licences.
“It’s very easy to blame young people but remember these are the same young people who helped in their clubs and communities providing meals to our elderly during lockdown, these young people are our future generation and are the backbone of our clubs and communities.”
He added that hotels, restaurants and pubs should have remained open and that these businesses have adjusted to the Covid-19 guidelines making their premises a safe environment to consume alcohol.
He said pubs and hotels are one of the most highly regulated sectors in the country and bar staff are all trained the “safe serving of alcohol” and licensed premises are answerable to the Gardai and it’s a much more controlled environment.Tags: