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International Nightlife Association defends nightlife venues as safe spaces

International Nightlife Association defends nightlife venues as safe spaces
International Nightlife Association defends nightlife venues as safe spaces
Written by Harry Johnson

The nightlife industry can be a solution to the current pandemic since it could be a primary detection source together with the governing authorities and act as a firewall to contain the spread of the virus.

  • It’s safe to say that the spike in illegal parties is due to the lack of legal nightlife offer
  • Closing dance floors, not being able to serve alcohol, and limiting closing hours is not a viable option
  • Restrictions are being reduced worldwide but nightlife is still being highly limited

These past months have paved the way for numerous successful pilot tests conducted in nightlife spaces with prior COVID-19 testing. Recently, the UK government has shared the positive data of the pilot event that took place in Liverpool (under the UK’s Event Research Program) where there was no social distancing or masks enforced. Among the primary findings were that when screening and efficient ventilation is introduced, the risk of transmission of COVID-19 is greatly reduced. Precisely, among the 60,000 attendees in 9 large-scale events, only 15 tested positive, hence the evidence from the Events Research Program will be used by the government to shape its policy for the return of crowds to venues including theatres, cinemas, and nightclubs.

Some other nightlife events have taken place in cities such as Amsterdam, where 1,300 people attended a music event at the Ziggo Dome designed to examine the risks of reopening venues and plan for the easing of lockdown restrictions. Also in Spain, INA’s Gold Member Venue Sala Apolo Barcelona held a successful pilot event and there was also a successful concert in Palau Sant Jordi Barcelona with 5,000 people and the obligation of previous test, an FFP2 mask but no social distancing this past March. Recently, in Sitges, bars and nightclubs opened up to over 400 volunteers with previous screening and have proven to run smoothly though the results have not been shared yet.

It’s safe to say that the spike in illegal parties is due to the lack of legal nightlife offer and the need for social interaction between “socially starved” clubbers especially after having to endure the consequences of being in quarantine and having to comply with strict curfews. Restrictions are being reduced worldwide but nightlife is still being highly limited, causing chaos in the streets and disorderly conduct not being able to be contained by law enforcement. Due to this and the numerous pilot tests that have been conducted proving that nightlife activities can run with prior screening, the time to regain nightlife’s new normal is now.

Ocio de Ibiza drives a pilot test in June to push reopening

Ibiza’s Nightlife Association (Ocio de Ibiza) which is adhered to the INA has asked the Balearic Government to establish a very clear roadmap in the process of reopening of the industry on the island which includes a specific schedule of openings, opening and closing times, and preventive measures to be applied by all day and nightlife establishments.

The Association’s statement has expressed to the Government the concern of employers and workers in the industry for the lack of definition of the Administration when establishing a roadmap for the opening of nightlife facilities. The Association put the initiatives that are carried out in other parts of Spain and the world through pilot tests on the table to organize the future reopening of the premises, experiences that for the most part have been organized with the support of local health authorities.

In this sense, the Association intends and has the green light to carry out a pilot reopening test to assess how to return to activity safely and having “very clear” the conditions that the premises must meet. Ocio de Ibiza reaffirms their intention and the good relationship and communication they have with the administration, convinced that only by joining forces will it be possible for Ibiza to be a safe, attractive, desired and, sought-after destination.