The draft guidelines state that all adult clients must provide their contact details

All patrons who eat and drink indoors at pubs and restaurants will be required to provide their name and contact tracing phone number, according to new draft guidelines released ahead of Indoor Hospitality’s reopening next week. for fully immunized people.

The guidelines, which were released shortly before midnight on Friday, say the EU’s Covid digital certificate will be the primary form of evidence for people looking to eat inside. Customers will be asked to present their HSE Covid-19 vaccination certificate or book or other proof of immunity at the entrance to the premises where they eat or drink and the QR code on the certificate will be scanned. Customers may also be asked to present photo identification to prove that they are an “authorized person”.

All customers, except those under the age of 18, will be required to provide contact tracing details which will be retained by the company for 28 days, according to the draft guidelines for hospitality. Businesses will need to keep a “record of time and date of arrival” of each customer along with their name and phone number which will be stored in accordance with GDPR rules, he added.

All restaurant or pub entrances should be “defined, managed and supervised” by staff with “an appropriate queue management system” at the point of entry, the guidelines note. Measures will also be necessary to ensure that people without the necessary documents cannot enter the premises.

There will be no time limit on how long guests can sit at a table, while a maximum of six people 13 years of age or older can sit at each table and there will be no no pre-booking obligation, he added. The six person limit will not include children 12 years of age or younger and the total capacity at a table with children will be 15 people.

Counter service will remain prohibited and all premises will continue to have to close at 11:30 p.m. in accordance with current Covid-19 regulations.

If a client leaves the premises for any reason whatsoever, including to access a smoking area, he must inform a member of staff and must subsequently either be rechecked or bring a “no pass. clearly identifiable transferable ”, as directed.

A physical distance of 2m must be maintained between two tables; however, if that is not possible, it can be reduced to 1m “in controlled environments,” the guide said.

Customers will be required to wear face coverings at all times when not seated at their tables and music, dancing or other entertainment between tables will not be permitted.

The decision to require contact tracing details of all customers over the age of 18 has angered stakeholders, with one source saying the decision “came out of nowhere.” “Previously, if there was a group of four, we would take a set of details. Now we have to take everyone’s cell phone number, ”a source said.

The decision to require surveillance at all entrances will “have personnel implications,” the source added. Businesses that fail to follow proof of vaccination rules may be subject to fines or closure, depending on the guidelines.

The attorney general met with government officials and Fáilte Ireland on Friday morning to finalize the regulations that will govern the indoor catering system which will come into effect on Monday. Attorney General Paul Gallagher expressed his concerns to Cabinet on Wednesday over certain elements of the regulations, such as data protection, enforcement and exclusion of unvaccinated people.

President Michael D Higgins has approved the legislation behind the new interior catering system. An app for businesses to verify proof of vaccination or recovery from Covid was due to be ready on Friday.

Tánaiste Leo Varadkar said the latest guidelines were “extremely important” for the hotel industry, but stressed that they were “designed to be a temporary measure”.

“I know that operating this new system will be inconvenient for businesses and could increase personnel costs,” Varadkar said. “This is however the only way to reopen and stay open throughout this Delta wave.

“Hopefully it won’t be necessary in a few months, but it’s good to have it in place just in case it does. There will be some start-up issues and we will work with industry to review and modify the regulations as needed and based on practical experience. “

Delta variant

Asked on Friday about the increase in cases attributed to the Delta variant, the Tánaiste said that “the link between cases and the number of people hospitalized, in intensive care and dead has weakened considerably,” and noted that he There are between 800 and 900 more hospital beds than before the pandemic.

“That doesn’t mean hospitals won’t be pressured – they will – but we think it’s the one we can manage and so we don’t think we need to reimpose the restrictions.”

The much-discussed Covid-19 booster vaccine is being prepared “on an emergency basis” according to the Tánaiste, who said it was in its infancy and that vaccination data Israel were under consideration.

Mr Varadkar said the government expects a sharp increase in cases over the coming weeks and said restrictions are unlikely to be further relaxed before the Delta wave passes.

“There is a strong feeling, certainly within the government, and certainly from the advice we are receiving from Nphet, that we should be very careful with any further easing of restrictions at least until the peak of the Delta wave and it should be. in a few weeks. “

Separately, regarding the number of people who can attend weddings, Varadkar said Cabinet would consider this next week.

“Then we should be able to give people more information. I guess the difficulty in applying immunity pass systems to marriages would be related to the presence of children and people who might need to de-invite unvaccinated or not fully vaccinated people, and I think that would be very. difficult.

“This is something we would have to really think about.”

Meanwhile, the Department of Health announced that an online certificate of recovery portal has been launched to allow members of the public to request a certificate of recovery.

Instead of calling the Covid digital certificate helpline, a person can now complete an online form to request a recovery certificate.

A member of the public can request this certificate if they had a positive RT-PCR test more than 11 days ago and less than 6 months (180 days) ago. This certificate proves that you have had Covid-19 within the last 6 months and is considered another form of the EU Covid digital certificate.

Details in ‘black and white’

Ahead of his organization’s meeting with the government, Restaurant Association of Ireland chief executive Adrian Cummins told RTÉ he felt the majority of restaurants would be ‘ready to go’ for the reopening. Monday. Some may not have their staff ready, he acknowledged, but in general the industry had a “can do” attitude and they are ready to welcome customers on Monday.

Customers will also need to know what will be required of them so that they can bring the proper documentation, he said. “It is important that we all work together, that the flow to restaurants is managed appropriately,” he said.

“We try to speed up the process from when customers arrive until they are seated at their table. “

Mr Cummins said industry members had already had a briefing on the technical side of the new regulations, including demonstrations on how to scan the EU’s Covid digital certificate.