Dáil debates

Tuesday, 22 June 2021

Saincheisteanna Tráthúla - Topical Issue Debate

Covid-19 Pandemic

10:30 pm

Photo of Catherine ConnollyCatherine Connolly (Galway West, Independent) | Oireachtas source

I think the Minister of State is failing to grasp the significance of what is happening here. We are sending out a message that businesses can take over public spaces and serve alcohol, which breaches by-laws that prevent the consumption of alcohol in such spaces. That is one message that is being sent out. The Government is placing the Garda in an impossible position.

Galway City Council passed the Barcelona Declaration almost 20 years ago, guaranteeing universal access to all of the city's residents to the streets of Galway for services, regardless of ability and age. In addition to giving consideration to the needs of businesses, a balancing of rights is required here, and that has not been considered. We are focusing on law. To me, the law is quite clear. You get a licence to serve drink on a premises and the drink can be taken and consumed outside, unless there are by-laws in place. Such by-laws are in place in Galway.

The Government message to the public to enjoy an outdoor summer must be healthier and cannot just be about the consumption of alcohol and taking over public spaces. It must be much fairer, broader and more inclusive than that. That is the problem.


No comments

Log in or join to post a public comment.