"Serving the South Bay area..." |
Masks: We require a well-fitting mask to be worn by all attendees (exception for musicians and callers while on stage). Masking continues to be an effective and accessible way of protecting dancers from a variety of airborne diseases. (We will continue to provide KN-94 or similar masks if you forget.)
Vaccinations: We encourage you to stay up to date with any available vaccinations as a way to protect yourself against illness. However, as of July 2023, we will no longer require dancers to document that they have been vaccinated against COVID-19. Current COVID-19 infections and hospitalizations in our community are significantly lower than when we first adopted these protocols; vaccinations and medications have helped reduce the impact of this disease in our community.
Contact Tracing: When you attend one of our dances, we collect your email address. You will receive a reminder email requesting that you let us know if you become ill within 7 days of the dance. If we learn that someone has become sick, we will let you know that you might have been exposed (without revealing the person's identity). We also provide results of the contact tracing online.
Common Sense Self-Wellness Check: Please stay home if you are not feeling well on the day of the dance (even if it's "just a cold"). We also request that, if you become ill and/or test positive for COVID within 7 days of a dance you attended, you send us an email at SBGrangeEvents@gmail.com.
We will also track the rate of cases in our community and at our dances. If case rates rise, or if we see more cases of COVID/illness among dancers, we will re-evaluate these protocols.
If you have any questions or comments about our COVID protocols, please contact us at SBGrangeEvents@gmail.com.
Why did we change our protocols in July 2023?
- To better align with the current / ever changing status of COVID, while emphasizing safety.
- While people have reported testing positive for COVID after several of our dances, it has never been more than one individual, leading us to believe that COVID has not spread at any of our dances (see contact tracing results of past dances here). As we alter our protocols, it is certainly possible that COVID could spread at our dances, in which case we will revisit our new policy and may tighten restrictions again.
- We prioritize the use of high-quality masks, which we believe are the most effective protection not only from COVID-19 but colds and flu as well.
- We value being able to offer this COVID-safe space for people who may not otherwise be able to participate in social dance, recognizing that few spaces remain which still require masks.
- To better align with results of a survey conducted in early 2023, which gathered input from over 180 Olympia contra dancers on COVID-19 policy preferences
(Oly Contra survey summary).
- Among other things, we learned that there are still many different opinions about how COVID should be addressed in our community, that our current policy excludes people in a variety of ways, and that a significant number of people are open to slightly loosening our current policies, with a preference for removing vaccination verification before masking requirements.
- To better align with community values of creating an inclusive space by allowing folks who cannot provide proof of the COVID-19 vaccination and booster to attend the dances.
- Current protocols are not easily accessible for new dancers; many people do not carry vaccine cards with them anymore, and are frequently turned away at the door.
- Our current protocols requiring proof of vaccination/booster exclude some people who were community members before COVID and would like to dance again.
- Our current protocol does not allow for people to attend who have medical or other conditions which prevent vaccination. We considered allowing a negative covid test as a substitute, but that is no longer an equitable option for many. Also, as organizers, we are not comfortable asking individuals to disclose that type of medical information.
- To save time and effort for organizers and volunteers, so that more energy can go into other aspects of organizing these dances.