Sinn Féin MLA Caoimhe Archibald has written to the Infrastructure Minister asking for guidance on pavement café licences to support hospitality businesses to reopen and make use of outdoor space to implement social distancing guidance.
The party’s economy spokesperson said:
“As lockdown measures are lifted, and businesses begin to reopen there will be challenges for them to operate while implementing social distancing.
“This will be a particular issue for hospitality businesses including cafés, bars and restaurants.
“Legislation allows for pavement cafés with temporary furniture on public areas to supply food or drink, licensed by councils.
“In awarding these licences councils must have due regard to all current disability discrimination legislation.
“The Department for Infrastructure has responsibility for the guidance in relation to the ‘highway considerations’ of pavement café licences including access.
“I have therefore written to the Infrastructure Minister asking that she bring forward this guidance as a matter of urgency to facilitate businesses operating in this way where it is appropriate, so they can reopen more safely, implementing the social distancing obligations.”