FSB Response to First Minister's Coronavirus Press Conference

Press Releases 17 Sep 2021

FSB Policy Chair Ben Francis responds to the statement by the First Minister on Friday 17 September 2021

Speaking following the First Minister’s Coronavirus Review Update, Ben Francis, FSB Wales Policy Chair stated:

“We note the First Minister’s announcement this afternoon of measures to combat a rise in Coronavirus cases across Wales.

Businesses in every sector have been working hard over many months to implement measures to protect staff, customers and to keep their communities safe. We recognise that our members have been at the frontline of these efforts and that they have done everything asked of them during what has been a testing time.

The proposed strengthening of messaging around existing measures such as wearing face coverings in enclosed public spaces and observing social distancing where possible, needs to come with a particular plea to individuals not only to observe those measures but to respect business owners and their staff as they seek to uphold these measures within their premises. We continue to hear stories of business owners and staff who face abuse for simply pointing out the legal obligations of individuals. Such abuse is unacceptable and should be condemned.

We note too the First Minister’s announcement of the introduction of Covid Passes from 11th October. There needs to be communication and clarity about the definition of nightclubs in particular and therefore the businesses which would fall within this definition. Businesses should not be left confused or at risk of inadvertently finding themselves in breach of this new requirement. We hope that in the run-up to the implementation of these measures, Welsh Government will engage closely with affected businesses and there will similarly need to be a strong messaging campaign by Government to individuals of the need for the Pass in order to minimise the risk of confrontation with business owners or employees of premises.

We recognise that Welsh Government is having to make finely-balanced decisions and while some of these may not be welcome by all businesses, we accept that the intention is to allow businesses to continue to operate safely rather than implement measures which might have a more profound impact on businesses and the economy such as the lockdowns of the past 18 months”


Media Contact: Ben Cottam – 07917 628926