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A Message from our Chairman, Fintan O’Toole

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A statement from our Chairman, Fintan O’Toole, who reflects on memories of HRH Queen Elizabeth and the impact on small business owners during this period of mourning. As an HR professional, Fintan shares insights for employers regarding the state funeral.

Queen Elizabeth touched all of our lives, and today we will all start to come to terms with the end of an era and the loss we all have suffered. I am sure that, like me, you will see the thousands of tributes coming in from around the world and reflect on a life of selfless service and compassion. Take time to reflect on the memories that you have – without doubt, many will be related to positive, happy events that punctuated her reign. Queen Elizabeth was a moral compass, and I recall the occasions we turned to her at times of extreme sadness and national concern for strength and guidance. I am privileged to have met her and had the honour of singing to her as a schoolboy.

As small business owners, you must be reflecting on our loss and doubtless have questions as to how the period of mourning that follows will impact on your businesses. We have already seen that a number of sporting and cultural events have been cancelled, and there will doubtless be announcements regarding the funeral, which is due to take place in the next ten to eleven days. It is not clear whether this will be a bank holiday. Operation London Bridge, which was updated as recently as September, suggests that the day of the funeral will effectively be a bank holiday, although it will not be named as such. If the funeral falls on the weekend or an existing bank holiday, an extra bank holiday will not be granted. If the funeral falls on a weekday, the government does not plan to order employers to give employees the day off — the documents say that is a matter between employees and their staff.

It is expected that there will be further announcements today, September 9th 2022.

May she rest in peace. God save The King.

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