For another time, bars have been left out of the adjustments to the Public Health Ordinance, as Government on Wednesday moved to stem the spread of Covid-19 coronavirus.
And bar owners are concerned that this will have a further negative impact on business.
Barkeepers and Operators Association of Trinidad and Tobago (BOATT) members have been operating with a ‘buy and go’ system since August 17, 2020. This means that no one is allowed to consume food and beverages on the premises or precincts.
Responding to the new restrictions which came into effect at midnight on Wednesday, BOATT stated that decisions to restrict businesses were economically detrimental to the country. It stated that keeping restrictions with little enforcement was futile and only takes away from legally operating establishments. This, BOATT stated, opens up a whole illegal underground industry where no health protocols will be observed.
BOATT stated that members understood that government was trying to curb the spread of COVID-19. The restrictions, however, were only for a selected few.
“Persons are still allowed to congregate in open spaces like public savannahs, mall car parks consume alcohol and food in a party like atmosphere, this has also opened up an underground market for the illegal sale of alcohol with little or no enforcement from the TTPS.” It stated.
BOAT stated that proper consultation was needed to assist the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service (TTPS) in enforcing regulations.
“BOATT is of the firm belief that with proper adherence to health protocols and strict enforcement we can win the fight against the coronavirus, the TTPS must carry out their duties effectively and equitably and be given the necessary tools and training to allow this process to be of value,” it stated.