We're Back With In-Person Events: What Safety Measures Against Covid-19 Do You Want Us To Have?

As I start thinking about the return of in-person events, a lot of questions and ‘what-if’ situations can arise due the Covid-19 pandemic. This means, that apart from restrictions dictated by the Government and Venues, we will also have to think about what makes everyone comfortable and solutions to possible situations, such as:

  1. :tickets: Folk buys a ticket to an event and just before it happens, they test positive or starts getting symptoms. What should we do? We’re thinking that the best solution is to refund the ticket price (minus any admin charges) when the result of a PCR test is presented. In this case, as one can develop symptoms and not have Covid-19, the best and sensible thing is to self-isolate, so we would also take a negative result and still refund the ticket. What are your thoughts?

  2. :syringe: Unvaccinated folks want to attend. Should we demand the result of a PCR or Lateral Flow test 72 hours before? At the moment, this is out of our control at some venues, as they’re already demanding this, but some aren’t. What do you think we should do?

  3. :mask: Mandatory wearing of masks: the current Government Guidance is to wear masks in all in-door spaces. However this guidance might change and towards the summer months, this might not be needed. Would you like us to continue with this guidance at all times?

These are some example situations we have thought about and I’m sure there are plenty more. So, I would like to ask you all lovely people to help me build a good support document with MoT rules to our in-person events. Feel free to comment on the above situations or to add more questions.

I want to make sure I cover all possible situations, but most of all I want everyone to feel safe at our in-person events! Can you help me achieve that?

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oh, indeed @dianadromey

I’m part of planning a large outdoor event with thousands of participants and hundreds of internationals this coming summer. it’s been a rollercoaster. And looking into terms & conditions too - we want to be fair wrt cancelations.

Tickets: good plan to provide a refund for both positive PCR, self-isolating people, and due to government restrictions. Perhaps set two dates: full refund up to 14 days before, half after? As seats are probably limited at the venue consider a waitlist to fill up seats?

Vaccination status: Personally I would prefer all have at least a recent flow test - unless medically exempt. Perhaps a self/flow test pr day as with ATD2021. But I know it’s a tricky topic.

masks etc: Follow government guidance but embrace that people would like to wear masks etc. Ventilate the venue frequently.

fingers crossed, Jesper

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Thanks for opening this up to the community!

A few things that come to mind, which will depend on local guidance, policies etc. I imagine much of which is being discussed already. But you ask for thoughts, so here ya go!

During the event someone / people test positive

How could we notify people , or otherwise manage the situation? If people need to isolate and miss the event / part of the event, then what?

Venue considerations

Social distancing, ventilation, space in areas. I imagine catering is a bit more difficult these days.

:+1: for masks, and vaccinations for me. I appreciate there are different views on this…

Transport & accommodation

May be ways for people in the community to travel together with like minded people. Forming an ad-hoc bubble. Could help manage some risks with public transport, and maybe cost. But then again maybe not :man_shrugging:

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Hi @jesper ,
Thank you so much for the suggestions! Let’s stay in touch regarding your event too as I would be very interested to know how you approach things too.
Regarding your topics:

  • Tickets: So they way we’re thinking about Covid-19 related cancellations is that of you test positive, develop symptoms or are required to self-isolate before the event, we will be willing to offer a full refund (minus admin charges). In order for this to happen, we would need to be sent the result or proof a PCR test has been taken in the days before or up to 2 days after the event. At the moment, the government guidance is to self-isolate for 7 days, but this is constantly changing, so we would also need to add a note that the amount of days will be depending on the current government guidance?
    Yes, ticket numbers will be limited, so good shout there to open a waitlist system! Will definitely consider that. Of course we would encourage those who can’t attend to donate their tickets to someone who wants and can attend first.

  • Vaccination status: Yes, definitely a sensitive subject. So I guess with this we will need to go by what the current government guidelines dictate.

  • Masks: Agree. In terms of venue search, that’s something I’m considering for all venues at the moment, wide, large spaces that can provide better social distancing and are well ventilated. But yes, in the end another one that will depend on government guidelines.

Thanks Jesper!! Some food for thought here!

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Hi @azza554 ,

Thanks for contributing to my Covid-19 guidelines build-up!

  • During the event someone / people test positive: So yes, as I mention to Jesper just before, I’m starting to create the refund policy for any Covid-19 related cancellations. Have a look at my previous reply and let me know your thoughts on that. But what do you mean by notifying people? What exact situation are you thinking of?

  • Venue considerations: Correct, large spaces and ventilations will be considered for each event to allow social distancing. As for catering, I’m looking at ‘grab and go’ options: everyone would pick up their own bag/box and avoid queueing at buffets and share serving spoons, etc at open buffets. What do you think?

  • Transport & accommodation: Good point, but that’s something we don’t get involved with. I like to encourage people to take public transport whenever possible for a more environmentally friendly solution of travel, but yes, up to each individual.

Thanks Aaron! Great suggestions and points! :smiley:

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I meant more a case of during the conference someone realises they have covid. I suppose that probably is covered by test and trace etc.

For example, on day 2 of the event I test positive, and have been in close contact with most people there. Should I report that to you, as part of your covid plans to notify the rest of the attendees. As well as any other required gov rules.

That sounds great! :+1:

Fair point that it falls outside the organisers remit.

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Oh that’s a very good situation indeed!

In that situation I would then suggest: if someone develops symptoms during the conference, we would request for that person to come forward to a member of the MoT staff and go home. We can have a few Lateral Flow tests available for these type of situations, but as they’re not 100% accurate, we would suggest for that person to go home regardless of the result. We could inform everyone in the conference of this and suggest everyone to do a LF or PCR test when they get home from the conference, but then should we sort of scare everyone? Make them feel uneasy until the end of the conference? As there’s a lot of common colds also going around at the moment, not sure it would be necessary…

As for a refund in this situation, I would be inclined to say no to a refund, just to prevent anyone developing symptoms just before the conference ends :sweat_smile:

What are your thoughts on my suggestions?

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I think thats sounds fair. I’m sure there’ll be other gov guidance in place too. I personally feel like I’d want to know if there was a case, so I could take make informed choices.

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