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Implications of new public health measures​

Like many of you, we’re considering the implications of yesterday’s government announcement in terms of our sector now and through the coming months. This morning we’ve asked for clarification from the Department on the questions below and will revert back as soon as we have a response. If you’d like add to this list of questions, please email manager@theatreforum.ie.

Questions we’ve submitted: 

Coming into place from midnight Thursday 18 November
everyone should revert to working from home unless it is necessary to attend the workplace in person’

Arts Centres and Theatres as workplaces

  • While it’s obvious that performers, cast, crew, artists, front of house and backstage teams involved in the development, creation, production, rehearsal and performance have to attend in person, the situation for anyone in an admin role is less clear. Will it be a case of a common sense and safe interpretation of ‘necessary’?

Work Safely Protocol

  • Given that theatres and arts centres are workplaces, does this mean that all productions and their producers, professional and amateur, must operate to the latest Work Safely Protocol, have a responsibility to carry out their own risk assessment and implement all the necessary measures, including testing, to mitigate risks?

Activities

  • Please provide an update on classes and indoor events both for adults and for under 18s?

Coming into place from midnight Thursday 18 November‘you will need COVID-19 passes (based on vaccination or recovery) for cinemas and theatres’

  • From this Friday, this change means that only people with Covid passes will be able to attend performances, albeit at 100% capacity.
  • What does this mean for under 18s without Covid passes attending a performance, either accompanied or unaccompanied?
  • Similarly, what does this mean for school groups?
  • Is an audience of up to 50 people with appropriate social distancing for mixed groups of vaccinated and unvaccinated people no longer possible?
  • When will the new Statutory Instrument (S.I.) be published? And would the Department prepare a letter of support for theatres and venues implementing this Covid pass only admission policy?
  • We anticipate lots of questions about mixed immunity groups and patrons who are not vaccinated, especially those already booked to attend a Christmas show or concert.

Coming into place from midnight Thursday 18 November‘closing times for all on-licensed premises (except for guests staying in hotels) will move to midnight with all customers vacated from the premises by that time’

Bars in theatres and arts centres

  • Closing at midnight is an issue for late night events in venues rather than theatre performances which typically happen earlier in the evening. But do the November 2 guidelines for the operation of Qs, bars and service in a safe and controlled manner in venues still apply to bars in theatres, arts centres and venues?
  • When will the updated COVID 19 GUIDELINES FOR VENUES OPERATING FOR THE PURPOSES OF LIVE ENTERTAINMENT AND NIGHTCLUBS guidance be published?
Photo Credit ©Jon Tyson