Pictures show crowded dance floor at Saskatoon nightclub despite COVID-19 protocols

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Although dance floors are banned in Saskatchewan due to the COVID-19 pandemic, videos posted online show otherwise at a nightclub in Saskatoon.Several videos posted on Snapchat appear to show dozens of people crowded together on a dance floor inside Diva nightclub on Saturday. No one seems to be physically distancing themselves or wearing a mask.

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According to Saskatchewan public health guidelines, all dance floors or spaces that promote the congregation are off-limits to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Although live DJs are permitted, physical distancing should be ensured at all times, in accordance with public health guidelines.

Diva nightclub owner Aaron Paetsch told Global News he was aware of the videos and posts circulating online, but he remains confident in the security protocols he has in place.

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“While we appreciate this concern, we can assure you that we continue to follow, and go beyond, all guidelines and rules set by the Saskatchewan Health Authority,” Paetsch said in a statement.

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Paetsch says every weekend since reopening, the venue has reached legal capacity while refusing guests at the door.

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“Tables are spaced out on the dance floor to limit gatherings and discourage dancing, DJ requests are not taken, plexiglass has been installed to separate the seats, distance markers are installed around the bar for the spacing, and all staff should wear masks while they are working, ”Paetsch said.

He added that all customers are encouraged to wear a mask, and free masks are offered at the door.

“I assure you that we followed all the protocols defined by the SHA to the best of our ability. We have been inspected by police and firefighters and the SHA several times since reopening and have always passed every inspection and never received a fine contrary to rumors online, ”Paetsch said.

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Paetsch said the health and safety of staff and customers is his top priority.

“But remember that once customers are inside we can’t control every move they make, or how they decide to walk away from others,” he said.

Global News has reached out to the Saskatchewan Health Authority for comment.

With files from Nathaniel Dove.


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