Parties, Sports, Shows, Weddings, Funerals, etc.
To the extent possible, the Ministry of Health recommends events be held outdoors. If an event must be held indoors, ensure it is a well-ventilated space where windows and doors can be opened (this includes cabins of boats). However, be careful that opening windows and doors does not pose another safety or health risk to staff or attendees (e.g. risk of falling or triggering asthma symptoms). If it is outdoors under a tent, ensure the tent has open sides.
Event organisers should ensure ventilation systems operate properly and increase circulation of outdoor air as much as possible. If portable ventilation equipment like fans are used, take steps to minimize air from them blowing from one person directly at another person to reduce the potential spread of any airborne or aerosolized viruses.
Calculate the maximum number of attendees based on how many people can reasonably maintain adequate physical distancing at the venue. Avoid over-crowding a space, whether indoors or outdoors. Consider specific venue characteristics such as furniture as well as likely pinch points and busy areas when deciding appropriate numbers of people.
Reduce the need for attendees to queue, but where this is unavoidable, discourage attendees from queueing indoors. Use outdoor spaces for queueing where available and safe. Attendees in an indoor queue should maintain physical distancing and wear a mask. This includes queueing for entry, as well as for food service or a silent auction, for example.
There should be adequate supplies available to support healthy hygiene behaviours, such as soap, water, hand sanitiser containing at least 60 per cent alcohol, paper towels, tissues, disinfectant wipes, masks (as feasible), and no-touch trash cans.
It is recommended that organisers require frequent employee hand washing with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not readily available, employees can use hand sanitiser that contains at least 60% alcohol and rub their hands until dry.
It is recommended that organisers require attendees to use hand sanitiser or hand washing facilities as they enter the venue.
Although not required, organisers should develop a contingency plan to support contact tracing and notify the Department of Health of any case of COVID-19 at the event.
All persons attending the event or in the facility during the event should sign in and provide the following contact information:
- Their full name
- Date and time of visit
- Phone number and/or email address
Scientific evidence has shown that masks are a very effective form of personal protective equipment. All organisers should develop a mask policy that is suited to their event.
The Ministry of Health strongly recommends attendees wear masks indoors when not seated at a table (including when moving around and queuing, for example). Also, masks should be worn in situations where attendees are sitting shoulder to shoulder, such as in an auditorium.
It is recommended that staff wear masks indoors and outdoors at all times.
Provide all staff with information on proper use, removal and washing of masks. Refer to the Government’s advice on masks.
Please note masks should not be placed on:
- babies or children younger than 2 years old,
- anyone who has trouble breathing, or,
- anyone who is unconscious, incapacitated, or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance.
Cleaning & Disinfecting
Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces within the venue at least daily or between uses as much as possible. This includes door handles, sink handles, drinking fountains, grab bars, hand railings, cash registers, payment terminals, tables, countertops, bars, and condiment holders.
Develop a schedule for increased routine cleaning and disinfection. Make sure the schedule applies for rented event spaces as well.
Cleaning products should not be used near children. Staff should ensure that there is adequate ventilation when using these products to prevent attendees or themselves from inhaling toxic vapors.
Use disposable gloves and, after using disposable gloves, throw them out in a lined trash can. Do not disinfect or reuse the gloves and wash your hands after removing gloves.
If someone in an event space or work area tests positive for COVID-19, close off areas used by a sick person until after cleaning and disinfecting them. For outdoor areas, this includes surfaces or shared objects in the area, if applicable.
Wait at least 24 hours before cleaning and disinfecting. If 24 hours is not feasible, wait as long as possible.
Clean and disinfect indoor spaces in between uses – for Island Boats, this should be done between trips.
Clean and disinfect restrooms regularly (e.g. in the morning and evening or after times of heavy use).
Drinking fountains should be cleaned and sanitized regularly but encourage staff and attendees to bring their own water to minimize touching and use of water fountains.
Avoid Sick Attendees or Staff
Advise staff and attendees to stay home if they have tested positive for COVID-19 or are showing COVID-19 symptoms or just feel sick.
Advise staff and attendees to stay home and monitor their health if they have had close contact with a person who has symptoms of COVID-19 within the past 10 days.
Ensure that sick staff and attendees are aware that they should only come to the event/gathering if they have been cleared to do so by their medical practitioner. They should also be advised to follow the Government’s Quarantine “Dos and Don’ts” available at ‘Quarantine and Contact Tracing’
It is strongly recommended that staff ‘know your status’ at all times. This can be achieved by testing for COVID-19 at a community site or regularly using a home antigen test.
Attendees should be required to use a home antigen test kit on the day before or day of the event. Attendees who have a positive result must not attend.
Event planners should develop policies that encourage sick employees to stay at home without fear of reprisal, and ensure employees are aware of these policies. Consider developing flexible refund policies for attendees for events that involve a participation fee.
Organisers should also develop a ‘travel policy’ for staff and attendees. For example, people who have travelled recently could be required to wait until after day 4 before participating in group activities. Again, use of home antigen tests are helpful in this regard.