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An important message from the CDA

by Calgary Downtown Association


As the situation around COVID-19 has now evolved into a declared pandemic, we wanted to update you on the CDA’s current policies and the steps that we are taking. The health and safety of our people and our ability to continue to support you are most important to us. 

Effective this morning, we have activated the practice of social distancing at the CDA to help contain the spread of COVID-19.  As such, the CDA office is closed to the public on a go-forward basis.  Our work will continue online and remotely.

COVID-19 is a dynamic international event and the situation is changing on a daily basis. The City of Calgary is preparing its planning and communications to ensure stakeholders and partners have the guidance and information necessary to make decisions about their organization’s delivery of essential services and protect the health and wellbeing of Calgarians.

Alberta Health Services (AHS) is taking the lead on the COVID-19 response for the province and The City’s Calgary Emergency Management Agency (CEMA) is working closely with AHS and all orders of government in response to COVID-19. The City’s role during an infectious disease outbreak is to ensure a safe and viable community through continuity of local government, essential services and emergency response. This includes reviewing and implementing response plans and business continuity programs, maintaining the continuity of essential municipal services, and liaising with AHS and other stakeholders to align broader provincial response and recovery.

For updates and additional information on COVID-19 from The City, please visit Calgary.ca/covid19.

In order to prevent the further spread of COVID-19, everyone, including organizations, can do a few simple things. To protect yourself and those around you from contracting or carrying COVID-19, you are asked to:

  • Wash your hands frequently: This is the single most effective way of preventing the spread of disease. Use hand sanitizer, when you can’t wash your hands with soap and warm water.
  • Catch your germs: Cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze by using the inside of your elbow or your shoulder.
  • Avoid touching your face: In between handwashing, keep your hands away from your eyes, ears, nose and mouth.
  • Practice healthy habits: Eat well, exercise daily and get enough rest to help support your immune system.
  • Stay home if you are feeling sick: If you are experiencing, fever, cough, difficulty breathing or other flu like symptoms, stay home and away from others and contact your healthcare provider. If you have questions or concerns about your health contact Health Link at 811.

 The Province of Alberta has provided this poster that can easily be printed off and shared with your employees about staying safe during this time.

Events and Gatherings

The Government of Alberta has banned all mass gatherings of 250 people or more. This includes large sporting events, conferences and community events, but does not extend to places of worship, grocery stores, airports or shopping centres. The Province is also asking that any event be cancelled that has more than 50 attendees and expects to have international participants, or involves critical infrastructure staff, seniors, or other high-risk populations.

The City is recommending organizations determine the risk associated with events and gatherings by reviewing the Government of Canada’s website Risk-informed decision-making for mass gatherings during COVID-19 global outbreak for guidance.

For more information as it becomes available, please check the following resources:

Tips for places where people come in over time (trickle, not mass gathering)

  • Make sure there is space between people
  • Offer sanitizer
  • Frequently clean surfaces, particularly at entrance, door handles etc
  • Mass gathering rules don’t apply, but consider the guidance in spirit and how to create a safe space
  • Have signage asking people who are sick to not come in, and remind them to frequently wash their hands
  • Avoid lineups of people

 Timeline

All CDA events are on hold until further notice. No events will be put into place until we are confident it is safe for social gatherings. We suggest prior to hosting any large events you follow the lead of the AHS and their recommendations.
Risk-informed decision-making for mass gatherings during COVID-19 global outbreak

Indoor versus outdoor events

  • Mass gathering rules still apply to outdoor events
  • Does reduce risk to be outside, but still a risk
  • Focus on space between people

Restaurants and Food Services

  • No sick employees at work
  • Educate employees and have hand washing rules
  • Space people out at tables, i.e. spaces between tables
  • Have signage for customers (Don’t come in if you are sick….Wash your hands before eating)
  • Provide hand sanitizer
  • Wash high touch areas, particularly at entrance
  • Keep clients and staff informed and educated about what you are doing

 General Business Continuity Planning Information

The City of Calgary recommends all partner organizations review and develop business continuity programs within the context of COVID-19. Please see the Maintaining business during an infectious disease outbreak document for a business continuity checklist specific to infectious disease outbreaks. This checklist and business continuity planning can be customized for the size of your organization.

Key business continuity planning recommendations include:

  • Understand your priority services and priority positions;
  • Understand your business requirements, particularly your workforce requirements;
  • Understand what positions should be a priority for tele-working;
  • Socialize good techniques for preventing infectious disease transmission (i.e. discourage hand-shaking, frequent hand-washing);
  • Review policies around travel, sick leave, and processes to follow if an employee becomes ill, including how support may be offered to employees and coworkers at home or in self-isolation;
  • Actively encourage anyone who is feeling ill to stay home and away from others;
  • Research best practices in your industry.

Check back regularily for updated information.

Click here for a list of resources

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