Further Easing Of Restrictions For Hospitality Venues In NI Agreed By Stormont Ministers
A number of further relaxations of COVID-19 pandemic-related restrictions in Northern Ireland have been agreed by Stormont ministers.
As reported by rte.ie, following a four-hour meeting of the Executive yesterday (Monday September 6), ministers agreed that, from 5pm on Friday September 10, the requirement for table service in hospitality venues will be removed; customers will be permitted to stand while consuming food and drink in outdoor settings, and to take part in activities such as playing pool or using gaming machines; the restriction that permitted only ambient levels of music in venues will be removed; dancing will be permitted at post-wedding and civil partnership ceremony events; and the requirement to purchase tickets in advance for indoor venues that host live events and the need for audience members to have allocated seats will be removed.
Additionally, the maximum number of people that can meet indoors in domestic settings will reportedly increase to 15 people from four households.
The Executive is reportedly set to meet again on Thursday September 9 before the changes come into effect.
Northern Ireland First Minister Statement
Northern Ireland First Minister Paul Givan reportedly welcomed the above changes, and reportedly said that he hopes that further relaxations will be announced soon.
Givan reportedly said, "There have been quite a number of restrictions lifted. We will have a further discussion this Thursday as an Executive because there are other relaxations which still need to take place, so there will be a wider discussion.
"Today is progress. We have taken on board the health situation and the wider societal, community and economic information as well.
"Ultimately, I want to see more progress. I would have like to have seen progress around social distancing, moving that from regulation into guidance, but that is something that will now form the discussions on Thursday.
"Other jurisdictions, England and Wales and Scotland, they are lifting their restrictions or have already lifted them. The Republic of Ireland has now set 22 October as their final date for all restrictions to go and we are moving to that position in Northern Ireland where ultimately we can have these issues dealt with through good advice, rather than having the law and enforcement."
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