• Hannah Anderson

Covid-19 Update: 1st October

Updated: Oct 11



We all love to dance and want to get back to dancing as soon as possible, and we need to do this safely for everyone. We want to create an environment where people can enjoy themselves as much as possible. To see what online and in-person classes we have available to book at this time, click here.


We are following relevant public health guidance regarding health, hygiene and social distancing and following safe workplace guidelines to ensure our volunteers (that includes the Directors/teachers) are able to return, where they have chosen to. We are keeping up to date as guidance changes.

Mersey Swing Community Interest Company (CIC) follows guidance issued in relation to England. As of 31 July 2020 dance studios have been allowed to fully reopen in England, and Mersey Swing is following guidance on Grassroots sports, gym and leisure facilities as is our venue, the Black E, which is allowed to re-open in line with their own Covid safe procedures. We have also considered further guidance (see appendix 1).

The volunteer Directors of Mersey Swing have taken the following steps in developing a safer plan to return to dancing.

  • We have been bringing ourselves up to date with government and public health guidance

  • We have carried out a COVID-19 Risk Assessment for our classes and consider classes in solo dancing as the least risky class we can provide. It can be read here

  • We’ve updated and adjusted how classes will run, from entering the building, to leaving at the end of class. Please see our Infection Control Policy for more details. Classes will not be ‘drop in’ for the foreseeable future. Bookings will be made for a month block of classes (2-5 weeks) and will be paid for online. There will be no cash handling on site, although classes will be ‘pay as you feel’ to cover room hire (this is subject to change at a later date), dancers will need to make a payment for the block of class 48hrs before the start of the block to secure your place. If you would like to apply for a free place, email us: info@merseyswing.com

  • We have communicated with our dance community (through social media, and our website), our volunteer team and the venue manager at the Black E.

  • We will continue to review and adjust as new information and guidance emerges.

  • We have sought clarification from our insurers about any specific or additional requirements or limitations.

Who should not participate at this time:

  1. If you have recently travelled from a country that the UK gov requires you to quarantine upon reentry.

  2. If you develop symptoms, however mild, you should stay indoors at home and avoid contact with other people immediately and call NHS 111. If you have been contacted by Track & Trace, you must isolate as advised. Please do make sure you let us know. Unfortunately, we will not be able to issue refunds for anyone who is unable to attend due to self-isolation.

  3. Those classed as ‘vulnerable’ AND those who live with them, including:

  4. Pregnant women

  5. Clinically extremely vulnerable individuals (including those aged 70 and older)

  6. People who live with (or are bubbling with) clinically extremely vulnerable individuals (or who work with them)

  7. People who are clinically vulnerable.

  8. People who feel unwell. Even if you don’t suspect Covid-19 please stay home.

Refunds

If you have to self isolate during a block of classes we will NOT be able to refund.

If we are forced to cancel classes due to further restrictions, locally or nationally, we WILL issue a refund, and will contact you as soon as possible to arrange this.


Size of Class

Class sizes for Jazz Roots for Lindy Hoppers will be capped at 30 dancers plus 1 teacher and 1 volunteer in a studio with air conditioning and a large amount of dance space and an extremely high ceiling. We have conducted the measurements and feel this will allow 2m distance between dancers.


PPE

Dancers must remember to wear a face mask when entering into the Black E and at all times when not dancing. We will provide hand sanitiser, please use this regularly to protect yourself and others.


Mersey Swing Volunteers (i.e Directors, Teachers, Admin) returning

Mersey Swing has a duty of care to volunteers to ensure as far as reasonably practicable they are not exposed to risks to their health and safety. Mersey Swing Teachers are volunteers and as such those who are teaching our classes during this time have considered the risks and have elected to proceed with classes and will work with the dancers attending the course, to ensure guidelines are followed.

We respect our volunteers who may be protecting others or not willing to return just yet, and have facilitated the use of online platforms to communicate and the ability to volunteer from home where relevant.

Our volunteers and community have had an opportunity to contribute to this risk assessment.


Use of Personal Data: Track and Trace

Mersey Swing has a Privacy Policy and is GDPR compliant.

Our classes, going forward, will utilise a pre-registration system using google which is secure. We will be asking for:

  1. Email address

  2. Mobile phone number

  3. Name

We will also be asking for people to join a whatsapp group via your mobile phone, for ease and immediate contact if needed.

We will share this with the NHS as is necessary and where we have consent to do so.

Appendix 1

Other Guidance considered

· There was an update to the DCMS Performing Arts guidance [for England] on 13 August, which now also covers professionals and non-professionals. Non-professionals need to refer household guidance on numbers of individuals and households

Note:

Links provided by the Foundation for Community Dance 05/09/2020:https://www.communitydance.org.uk/developing-practice/covid-19

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