Fianna Fáil TD for Kildare North James Lawless has welcomed clarity from the Department of Business, Enterprise, and Innovation regarding the opening of some hardware stores during the public health emergency.

Deputy Lawless had previously called on the government to clarify the guidelines on the opening of garden centres and hardware stores as there was confusion regarding their status as an essential service. Media reports have confirmed hardware shops were considered an essential service.

Deputy Lawless said, “The clarity from the Department of Business, and Enterprise and Innovation is welcome. Since I first raised this issue many garden centres have moved to facilitate home delivery and a ‘click and collect’ model on certain products.  

“I had been contacted by local hardware businesses in Kildare as there was confusion on whether they could reopen. The clarification will be welcomed by them as they can continue to trade, providing essential products in home and business maintenance.

“In every instance I would urge all public health guidelines to be followed and to minimise traveling to these locations while we do our part in slowing the spread of the coronavirus.

“Physical health and mental health are so important in getting through this difficult time. To have the option to order materials from hardware stores or garden centres will be welcomed by people nationwide who want to use this time at home productively,” concluded Deputy Lawless.