Changes to Restriction Waiver Program Leave Calgary Business Owner Disappointed
Normally the Langdon Firehouse Bar & Grill would be busy with people enjoying a meal and live music. But on Monday, the owners made the difficult decision to close the doors to in-person meals.
“We made the decision to close because the feedback we received was important enough that we didn’t feel confident or secure to open the doors and ask our staff to deal with this backlash,” the co-owner said. Aleesha Gosling.
The owners of the fire station decided to introduce the restriction exemption program, requiring people to show proof of vaccination before entering.
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While the majority of customers were supportive, Gosling said a small number have made their strong opposition known online and in person.
“Stuff like ‘We’re part of the problem’ following government guidelines. That we are sheep. That we fall and give in to these regulations, ”Gosling said.
The province implemented the program to help protect customers and staff, as well as to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Alberta Launches COVID-19 Vaccine Passport Program
Proof of vaccination is now required in Alberta for places like restaurants and bars, if establishments are to operate without restrictions.
Establishments that do not require a vaccination passport must close the internal service.
Canadian Federation of Independent Business on Alberta’s New Restriction Waiver Program
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“We think if every company had a mandate to enforce this, maybe it would have been easier for people and business owners,” said co-owner Greg Thompson.
“We needed more clarity on how we were going to present this to our clients and educate our staff in conjunction with bringing a lot of this bullying online. Looking at: How are we going to take care of our customers and staff safely? “
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Long-time customers sympathize with the plight of the owners.
“I was quite disappointed. We are in a situation of hatred. People don’t love each other anymore, ”said Rick McDonough, a Langdon resident. ” It’s sad. “
“Stop and think about it. They are leaning against a corner. Either they comply with what the government asks them to do, or they close and they close so many times. Sooner or later the employees will not come back.
At this time, Firehouse still offers a pickup and delivery service. The owners hope to reopen later this week when they have more details on how staff will handle customer questions about the vaccination passport. They also hope to have a security team in place by the end of the week.
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Thompson and Gosling said they have heard from many other restaurants in the same situation.
“We don’t have a lot of options. We are forced to close for now due to lack of education and lack of confidence in how to handle the backlash, ”said Gosling.
“Paying money for the security team while losing money by not being open – it’s a horrible situation. But for us, it’s worth reopening those doors and having this security in place to protect our customers and staff. “