TUV Leader Jim Allister has slammed the NI Executives recent announcement of Covid 19 restrictions stating that it adds more pressure to businesses who have already been decimated by Covid 19.
Statement by TUV leader Jim Allister:-
“The recent announcement on Covid restrictions by the Executive before Christmas adds to the burden placed on businesses.
“Though laced with ambiguity – including whether there is meant to be a distinction between ‘statutory duty’ and ‘legal duty’ – these two paragraphs from the Executive’s statement put a significant burden on already struggling businesses:
*There will be a statutory duty on businesses to take reasonable measures to promote compliance with face coverings requirements, with a grace period until 7 January before enforcement is implemented.
*There will be a legal duty on businesses to take all reasonable steps to minimize transmission of the spread of the virus, with a grace period until 7 January before enforcement is implemented.
“Does this mean business owners are now to be the enforcers on face masks?
What is the intended difference between these two paragraphs?
How will ‘reasonable measures’ and ‘reasonable steps’ be defined?
What powers and protections has a business if a customer refuses to cooperate?
Are there attendant criminal sanctions to the statutory/legal duties being foisted on businesses, or is this anticipating only civil liability?
“Clearly, the resulting regulations need to bring clarity to these matters.
“It is clear though that all businesses are now being put in the front line of face mask enforcement. This is, I fear, unduly burdensome and may prove unworkable.
“I must also say that in circumstances where there appears to be a dearth of evidence on the potency of the Omicron variant, the Executive, once more seems to be operating on a ‘must do something’ approach, with little compelling logic.”