Sunday, July 21, 2024

Over 11,000 British Columbians sign letters urging province to drop restrictions at music venues


Music industry experts and over 11,000 British Columbians are calling on Dr. Bonnie Henry to lift the no dancing, no standing restrictions at BC music venues.

On November 2nd, the Canadian Live Music Association (CLMA) sent a letter to BC health officials calling on them to lift seating restrictions.

While venues have been able to return to 100 per cent capacity, CLMA said that seating restrictions have limited many venues to 65 or 75 per cent capacity while costs have remained virtually the same. CLMA has said that this risks a venue’s permanent closure.

At the end of October, Ontario lifted seating requirements for all concert venues, returning them to 100 per cent standing capacity for fully-vaccinated patrons. Quebec will lift their standing restrictions on November 15th.

BC will then remain the only province with seated restrictions at music venues despite having to be fully-vaccinated in order to enter a venue.

BC health officials failed to respond and two days later, CLMA sent another letter detailing the unequal regulations venues have faced.

The letter points out that “mingling and standing” are allowed in restaurants but not venues, fans are allowed to stand in their seats at sporting events, and moreover, the mere act of standing has not been scientifically shown to increase the spread of COVID-19.

At a press conference on Tuesday afternoon, Dr. Bonnie Henry addressed the current music venues’ restrictions.

“We are requiring people to have access to a seat because when people are seated it reduces transmission that much more,” said Henry.

The CLMA is encouraging music fans to fill out a form on its website to voice support for the campaign and pressure the BC government.

Over 11,000 British Columbians have filled out the letter in support of shelving the no dancing, no standing restrictions.

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