Re-open Protocol

As a member of the Canadian Association of Exposition Management (CAEM), we, Prairieland Park, are proudly adopting the protocols proposed as industry standards for expositions and trade shows in Canada.

Recognizing that each province and venue has their own specifications, this guide was created by the CAEM to outline the basic measures and considerations that are required to re-open exhibitions and trade shows safely. These guidelines will be applied in conjunction with current provincial, territorial and local legislation, regulations and policies which may evolve overtime to accommodate changes in relaunch / re-opening plans, as well as consumer confidence. It is also important to note that CAEM and Saskatoon Prairieland Park Corporation will periodically update this document, as new information about the virus is available or as health and safety measures are lifted, based on guidance from government and public health officials.

Protocols involving food service and related items will be discussed on a case per case basis taking into account all the relevant requirements and standards needed at the time of the event.

The health and safety of all event participants (exhibitors, attendees and workers) is a top concern amid the global COVID-19 pandemic. During this time, all parties must place an increased focus on physical distancing, as well as health, hygiene and safety in order to re-open events. When the event industry is allowed to re-open, the health and safety of all participants will be paramount, and will guide our approach, with all re-opening actions to be informed by provincial guidelines, health data and the adoption of clear measures.

Occupational Health and Safety

The recommendations in this guide constitute a set of industry specific best practice guidelines for the re-opening of the events sector in Saskatchewan. These guidelines should be used by event and trade show stakeholders as a supplement, in addition to the obligations that already exist under the Province’s existing Occupational Health and Safety Acts, including all existing resources to prevent COVID-19 in the workplace.

Guidelines

HEALTH HYGIENE AND SAFETY MEASURES

Venue and Organizer to:

  • Appoint a Health and Safety Point Person for the duration of the event, including planning, set up, the event days and dismantling of the event, to ensure best practice guidelines are being followed.
  • Implement, as required, a pre-work screening “health check” with workers, at the beginning of each shift, in accordance with public health regulations. This may include an active daily screening of workers for symptoms of fever, sore throat, cough, runny nose or difficulty breathing. Workers with these symptoms should not be allowed in the workplace and should be advised to return home.
  • Encourage workers to clean their hands regularly with hand sanitizer or soap and water, including at the start of their shift, before eating or drinking, after touching shared / common items, after using the washroom, after any commercial transactions if contact was made, and at the end of their shifts.
  • Ensure that key workers (cleaning, medical, food and beverage workers) are provided with and trained on the safe use of personal protective equipment which may include masks, eye protection and gloves. Continuous masking of all workers should be considered where physical distancing cannot be maintained between workers and between workers and exhibitors/attendees.
  • Promote contactless payments at restaurant / food areas, on-site box office, and anywhere else on the event site where commercial transactions might take place. If a cash payment is accepted, worker (cashier) should immediately sanitize their hands after completing the transaction.
  • Ensure shared equipment, machinery and tools, including but not limited to forklifts, pump trucks and scissor lifts, are regularly cleaned and disinfected.
  • Use appropriate disinfectant solutions, approved by Health Canada, for all cleaning and disinfecting procedures.
  • Ensure that any information booths, service counters, registration areas, box offices, restaurants / food service areas etc. are equipped with transparent partitions between workers and exhibitors/attendees.
  • Strongly encourage participants to use personal protective equipment, including masks, when on-site at the venue.
  • Encourage a no-contact policy (e.g. no shaking hands or exchanging business cards, encourage contactless payment and the advance purchase of tickets by visitors).

Venue to:

  • Post signage outside all entrances to the building, including loading docks and parking garage entrances, stating that individuals with a fever or symptoms of COVID-19, or individuals who have been asked to self-isolate by public health authorities, are restricted from entering the premises.
  • Install hand sanitizing stations and/or hand washing stations at key locations throughout the venue and exhibition site including entrances, restrooms, food and beverage locations, conference rooms, etc. with regular use encouraged for all participants.
  • Strongly encourage hand sanitizing and/or washing upon entry into the venue.
  • Operate all food service areas as outlined by public health regulations.
  • Conduct a thorough cleaning of event site, as outlined by public health regulations, prior to move-in, before the event opens and at the end of each event day.
  • Implement enhanced cleaning and disinfecting protocols with special attention to high-touch surfaces and areas including door handles, restrooms, waste receptacles, counters, seating areas, food preparation areas, pay stations, bank machines, ramps, escalators, elevators etc.
  • Implement appropriate measures for restrooms which may include:

o managing line-ups at the entrance points to each restroom

o publishing the maximum capacity for each restroom

o putting every other urinal “out of service”

o maintaining restroom doors in the open position

o install hand sanitizing stations at entrance/exit of restrooms

  • Display / publish cleaning protocols and measures.
  • Increase the collection and removal of waste receptacles.
  • Consider suspending coat check services, to avoid queuing and the unnecessary handling of personal objects, or implement enhanced health and safety measures to adapt coat check services and operations. In cases where coat check is managed by the organizer, this responsibility should be assumed by the organizer.
  • Ensure ventilation, temperature, humidity and air purification controls inside the venue meet the standards set out in public health regulations.
  • Manage procedure to address on-site concerns and answer questions from participants.

Organizer to:

  • Post signage outside all entrances to the event stating that individuals with a fever or symptoms of COVID-19, or individuals who have been asked to self-isolate by public health authorities, are restricted from entering the exhibition site.
  • Post signage around the exhibition reminding participants to clean their hands regularly, avoid touching their face, practice respiratory etiquette and for exhibitors to clean and disinfect their booths regularly.
  • Consider eliminating badges, badge holders and lanyards in favour of a bar coded confirmation on the participant’s mobile device. If badges, holders and lanyards must be used, they should be cleaned and disinfected before distribution.
  • Discourage handouts on show site, including exhibitors’ brochures, guides, catalogues and bags.
  • Clean and disinfect any and all audio-visual equipment after each use, according to the manufacturer’s instructions on products and process to avoid damage.
  • Communicate to exhibitors their responsibility to clean their respective booths and exhibits regularly throughout the exhibition.
  • Manage procedure to address concerns and answer questions from participants.

 

PHYSICAL DISTANCING MEASURES

Venue to:

  • Communicate that all venue workers practice appropriate physical distancing measures, in accordance with public health regulations. If a situation occurs where it is impossible to maintain physical distancing, a mask should be mandated and worn by workers. In this case, the venue will provide its workers with masks.
  • Introduce barriers, demarcate floors and plan for additional attendants to administer physical distancing guidelines in areas under the venue’s management where line-ups might occur.
  • Manage restaurant seating and layout (where applicable) to enable appropriate physical distancing, in accordance with public health regulations.
  • Post the maximum capacity of each elevator, based on appropriate physical distancing in accordance with public health regulations.

Organizer to:

  • Communicate that all participants practice appropriate physical distancing measures, in accordance with public health regulations. If a situation occurs where it is impossible to maintain physical distancing, a mask should be mandated and worn by participants. In this case, the organizer will provide its participants with masks.
  • Ensure that during the set up and dismantling process, a dedicated worker (with a mask) is stationed at the entrance of the loading docks, to ensure the delivery and pick-up of material is managed according to a pre-set move-in and move-out schedule and to control the number of individuals in the loading docks and on the exhibition site. In cases where dock access is managed by the venue, this responsibility should be assumed by the venue.
  • Design floor plan with aisle widths and booth layouts to allow participants to practice appropriate physical distancing, in accordance with public health regulations.
  • Introduce barriers, demarcate floors and plan for additional attendants to administer physical distancing guidelines in areas under the organizer’s management where line-ups might occur.
  • Manage seating in conference spaces (where applicable) to allow participants to practice appropriate physical distancing, in accordance with public health regulations.

 

CROWD CONTROL MEASURES

Venue to:

  • Manage entry and exit points to and from the exterior of the building, in case of an emergency, participants must have access to all emergency exits in the building.
  • Remove or restrict seating in waiting areas and create a process to ensure attendees stay separate while waiting to enter the event site (e.g. floor markings, outdoor distancing, etc.).
  • Consider how emergency preparedness plans are impacted by COVID-19 public health measures (e.g. building evacuation plans).

Organizer to:

  • Manage number of exhibitors and their workers on event site during set up and dismantling.
  • Enable online registration and online ticketing, wherever possible, to reduce contact onsite.
  • Limit the number of participants on the event site in order to enable physical distancing, in accordance with public health regulations. Some suggested strategies include:

o managing the number of people based on area in gross square feet

o restricting the capacity in the venue to a pre-determined percentage of maximum capacity

o implementing designated time slots for participants

o implementing advance registration and advance ticketing

o using, where appropriate, directional arrows on the floor, to create a logical flow of traffic throughout the exhibition site, to reduce crossover between attendees

 

COMMUNICATION MEASURES

Venue to:

  • Communicate in advance to the organizer and the venue’s official suppliers, all health, hygiene and safety measures; physical distancing measures; and crowd control measures that they are expected to follow and implement during the event.

Organizer to:

  • Communicate in advance to exhibitors and attendees, all health, hygiene and safety measures; physical distancing measures; and crowd control measures that they are expected to follow and implement during the event.
  • Ensure each exhibitor signs an Exhibitor Health and Safety Acknowledgment Form outlining their obligation to respect and enforce certain health, hygiene and safety measures; physical distancing measures; and crowd control measures, with their own workers and within their own booth space. See attached sample of Exhibitor Health and Safety Acknowledgment Form.
  • Ensure each exhibition supplier (decorators, A/V companies, registration companies, staffing agencies etc …) signs a Supplier Health and Safety Acknowledgment Form outlining their obligation to respect and enforce certain health, hygiene and safety measures; physical distancing measures; and crowd control measures, with their own workers while at the venue. See attached sample of Supplier Health and Safety Acknowledgment Form.
  • Communicate safe re-opening guidelines in exhibitor manual, on exhibition website, on mobile apps and through push notifications (if applicable).
  • Display signage throughout the exhibition site to communicate the most important health, hygiene and safety guidelines, as well as physical distancing guidelines.
  • Consider making announcements about the importance of maintaining physical distance and the importance of washing and sanitizing hands, in addition to other safe re-opening practices.
  • Communicate with attendees in advance – through email, social media channels, ticket purchasing sites and push notifications (if applicable) – key pieces of information, including updates from health organizations about admission policies; health, hygiene and safety guidelines; physical distancing guidelines; and crowd control guidelines.