Health authority flags Divas Nightclub as potential exposure point on same night as crowded dancefloor video
Nightclub announces temporary closure to make business safer
A popular LGBTQ bar in Saskatoon has been flagged as having been a potential COVID-19 exposure point on the same night a video of a crowded dance floor was recorded.
On Monday, the Saskatchewan Health Authority [SHA] said a person who was likely infectious with COVID-19 visited Divas Nightclub on Oct. 9 from late night to early morning.
That same night, a video of a packed dance floor at the club, with few people wearing masks or physically distancing, was recorded. The video quickly spread across social media.
On Friday, the club announced it was temporarily shutting its doors to work on a way to help nightclub patrons maintain distance.
"We have started working with SHA this week to implement a revolutionary new system with the intent this can be used in other nightclubs and late night bars who are all struggling with keeping people abiding by set out safety guidelines," read the post.
"We are not sure how long it will take, so at this time we do not have a reopen day set."
On Monday, the health authority also flagged possible COVID-19 exposures at the club on Oct.3 and 11.
The clip of the crowded dance floor angered owners of other local nightclubs, who said they had been trying to stick to the rules.
The club's owner previously said it was difficult to get a room full of drunk people to stay two metres apart, but said the club was trying to do so.
The Facebook post said Divas was one of the last clubs in the city to open, and offered free masks to patrons, as well as posted signs and arrows to keep people apart.
The closure comes on the heels of another possible COVID-19 exposure at a Saskatoon dance club.
Last week, the Saskatchewan Health Authority put out a COVID-19 alert for The Longbranch country bar. It said anyone who had been at the bar Oct. 8 should immediately self-isolate if they were not wearing a mask or sharing drinks.
At a news conference, Dr. Saqib Shahab, Saskatchewan's chief medical health officer said people need to follow guidelines while in bars, and should not be mingling with people outside their regular bubble.
Meanwhile, Divas said it would be working hard to make sure everyone is safe in their business.
"SHA has inspected Divas establishment multiple times since reopening and approved our processes and safety measures that are currently in place," read the Facebook post.
"We agree the SHA's measures currently in place are not working and that it's not enough, we can and will work with them to do better."
It's not clear when the club will reopen.
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With files from Morgan Modjeski, Laura Sciarpelletti and Guy Quenneville