Events during COVID-19

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Events during COVID-19

Black Sheep Comedy, a weekly open mic at Logan's Pub, 1821 Cook Street, in Victoria, BC. Tuesday nights. The comedian in the foreground is Zach Rousseau. Photo credit: Lucia Ribeiro

We know you are fed up, tired and ready for this pandemic to be over. But it is not.

Covid-19 is not over.

It is the same virus with the same impacts as it was in February and March. The economy opened back up and many of us returned to work, shopping and old routines. People became comfortable and safety measures were forgotten by some.

Unfortunately, and as predicted, we are now in the second wave of the pandemic. CASC is deeply concerned about increasing numbers as experts say we may reach 1,000 cases a day by mid-October.

The Chief Medical Officer of Health issued a statement this week outlining updated COVID-19 testing guidelines for Ontario to ensure that publicly-funded testing resources are available to those who need them the most.CASC supports the new testing guidelines.

See more information here:

Here are some guidelines that CASC has put forward for comedians and producers to check before, during and after shows.

  • Producers must communicate COVID-19 protocol to comedians prior to a show.
  • Comedians should self-screen before going out.
  • All touchpoints on stage should be disinfected before and after sets. The best protocol is a mic covering that is disposed of after each comic and thorough cleaning of the microphone, chords, stand and stool should occur between comedians. And any other items on stage that a comedian may touch.
  • Green Room – Masks should be worn at all times before performance and after. And at least 6 feet between performers in the green room. Which in some cases may mean only two comics in the green room.
  • There is no club owner, producer, festival, booker, or corporate gig on the planet whose authority overrides that of Public Health officials or the World Health Organization.
  • Do not perform on a show that does not provide a COVID safety plan in advance
  • Do not perform on a show that has failed to provide safety protocols or resources upon arrival
  • If you are on an outdoor show, or an indoor reduced capacity show, be sure to practice and maintain COVID safety protocol including, but not limited to: social distancing, wearing face coverings off stage, mic sanitizing or Bring-Your-Own-Mic
  • We do not recommend performing on pay-to-play shows. If a producer asks you for a deposit fee as a sign of commitment on your part, do not agree
  • If a show is charging a ticket fee or accepting donations comedians should be paid #paycomedians
  • Do not perform on shows that fail to provide harassment-free environments on and off stage.

Each comedian must assess their own risk tolerance based on their own risk factors. If you do not feel comfortable or feel that the rules are not strict enough, speak up. Tell the producer, your fellow comedians and demand change so we all can get back to work in safety.

We must all continue to do our part to keep each other safe so that we can keep our industry open through this challenging time. That means we all need to heed the advice of public health by continuing to wear masks, properly distance and wash hands. As you return to work, please encourage everyone to stay committed to these lifesaving measures.

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