retail rules Retailers can make arrangements for customers to buy non-essential items such as clothes on compassionate grounds, Government says
Retailers can make arrangements for customers to buy non-essential items such as clothes on compassionate grounds, the Government has said.
In a statement issued to Independent.ie, the Department of Business also said retailers can sell non-essential items through click or call and collect services during the national lockdown.
The new guidance follows the fallout from Minister of State for Retail Damien English saying clothes are considered non-essential items under Level 5 restrictions.
Minister English’s comments followed criticism from members of the public who could not buy baby clothes or funeral attire because of the Government’s strict rules on retail.
The Department of Business said Level 5 does not restrict people from purchasing any product but said it does stop people from physically entering what are consider non-essential shops.
They said all retailers can trade remotely online or over the phone while offering delivery and collection services.
“That means that if you’re a mixed retailer, you should separate your stock and only sell the items that are essential. So, for example, if you’re a supermarket or a big store that has groceries and clothes, you should separate off the clothes and only sell them by call-and-collect, click-and-collect or for delivery, but not in-store,” it said.
The Department also said retailers “can and have made arrangements, on compassionate grounds, for individual customers to purchase a non-essential item in store”.
“The Government would like to thank retailers for their efforts at this difficult time and will continue to engage with them over the coming days and weeks,” it added.
They also noted that the Trading Online Voucher Scheme and the Online Retail Scheme are available to businesses seeking to trade online.