Face coverings on the dancefloor and security patrol are amongst the list of measures proposed by the NTIA for a Covid-secure reopening of nightclubs.
A new report published by the Night Time Industries Association states that, according to research conducted by the Institute of Occupational Medicine, there is “no reason” why nightclubs cannot reopen “with safe measures in place”. The new mitigation measures include reducing capacity to 75%, temperature checks on entry, the wearing of face-coverings and a security-patrolled dancefloor.
The report comes after Michael Kill, CEO of the Night Time Industries Association, predicted a “financial armageddon” to hit the night-time economy, which employs 1.3m people in the UK and contributes £66bn to the UK economy per annum. More than half of members of the Night Time Industries Association (NTIA) fear they will collapse in the next two months without more government support, putting an estimated 754,000 jobs at risk.
“Despite the government’s furlough scheme continuing until the end of October, we will see the loss of a third of jobs across the sector by the end of September, the majority of which are young adults,” says Peter Marks, chief executive of Deltic Group, the UK’s largest operator of late-night bars and clubs in The Guardian. “We need a clear reopening plan, or at the very least fit-for-purpose financial assistance.”
The report argues that it does not make sense to “single out” nightclubs, which are often larger and better ventilated than restaurants and pubs, reducing the risk of airborne transmission of the coronavirus. It also makes the case that reopening nightclubs would prevent illegal activity from taking place in “unregulated environments such as beaches, parks and raves”.
This weekend alone, the Metropolitan police received information on more than 200 events across London. From Friday, fines of up to £10,000 for organisers of illicit gatherings will come into place across the country.
The report therefore states that there is a strong case for nightclubs to reopen, “albeit under strict controls flowing from government guidance and individual risk assessments informed by other sectors”.
📸 Photo by Antoine Julien