A meeting with the Public Health leading to progress 

A meeting with the Public Health leading to progress
September 25, 2020

Good news for the circus arts community in Quebec! Physical contact and close physical proximity are now allowed, with no time limit, so long as all parties wear surgical masks.

On September 24, we held a meeting with the Direction générale de santé publique (DGSP), the Commission des normes, de l'équité, de la santé et de la sécurité du travail (CNESST), the Ministère de la Culture et des Communications, as well as the committee with which our alliance has been working for several months. Discussions focused on the health procedures surrounding the training and practice of circus arts during the COVID-19 pandemic. Here are some of the details obtained during these discussions:

When should I wear a mask?

During training, creation sessions, rehearsals or performances, physical contact and close physical proximity are now allowed, with no time limit, so long as all parties wear surgical masks. This applies to all disciplines, except for the tight wire, as wearing a mask is considered to be dangerous while practicing this discipline. Please note that the face cover (made of fabric) is not recognized as safe by public health and CNESST.

In addition, since the last revised version of the CNESST performing arts guide, within a stable team, such as a duo, trio, quartet or company of 10 artists or less, contacts and closeness are allowed without surgical mask for a maximum cumulative duration of 15 minutes per day.

However, it is important to note that an artist who is part of a stable team with whom he or she is not wearing protection cannot be part of another stable team. This artist will only be able join another stable team after a 7 to 10-day period during which thre has been no contact with the first team. On the other hand, an artist who wears a surgical mask during training can train with different partners and/or teams.

All staff surrounding a stable team of artists, whether they are technicians, directors, choreographers, etc., must wear a surgical mask as well as eye protection if physical distance cannot be respected. It is recommended that these protections be worn at all times, even when more than two meters away.

Spectators, for their part, must wear the mask when in motion.

Good hygiene practices

When the practice of a discipline involves people touching the floor, it is required that the floor, as well as the equipment, be cleaned and disinfected between each different group use.

When a training or performance space is rented to a third party, an artist or a group of artist, the responsibility for compliance with public health and occupational health and safety rules is shared.

Respect the CNESST guide!

To find out about all the hygiene, distancing and prevention measures, consult the CNESST performing arts guide. This guide prevails at all times, especially when no there is no adequate protection, such as surgical masks, eye protection and/or physical distancing.

Preventing the spread of the virus is a collective responsibility. Let's all integrate the surgical masks into our professional life and apply all good practices so that we can continue to practice our art!