With the number of new COVID-19 cases continuing to climb and while some agree with Ontario’s decision to revert to a modified version of Stage 2, many small business owners do not agree.
This is why the City of Brampton is encouraging residents to support local businesses whenever possible in these dire times, particularly now during small business month.
During a conference on October 14, Mayor Patrick Brown discussed some ways that the community can help to support their local businesses.
While Brown emphasized the importance of supporting restaurants, he also stated that he has been receiving various concerns over local dance studios who will be further impacted in the next 28 days due to the region of Peel being reverted to a modified Stage 2.
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Councillor Charmaine Williams recently spoke out further in regard to the shut down of dance studios in a letter she wrote to Premier Doug Ford.
“I am writing this letter on behalf of Brampton residents from the dance community,” said Williams in the letter.
“Due to the modified Stage 2 restrictions that have grouped dance studios with adult fitness classes, the already struggling dance community are finding themselves significantly impacted by this change.”
“The dance community is asking that ‘Dance Studios’ be removed from the modified Stage 2 closures list, and for the Province of Ontario to provide a clear policy allowing dance studios to remain open during the modified Stage 2 phase.”
In the letter, Williams pointed out that dance is the only children’s activity or sport named in these recent closures.
“If children can train in hockey, soccer, martial arts, gymnastics, cheer, etc., they should be able to practice dance. Taking away a child’s access to exercise and recreation can adversely affect their physical and mental health,” said Williams in the letter.
“Many dance studios have worked hard to implement public health safety measures including mandatory mask-wearing, socially distanced spaces for dancers and adhering to the maximum of 10 participants per class,” she said in the letter.
“Studio owners believe that their closure is unfair and targeting an industry that has not been affected by the COVID-19 outbreak.”
Williams concluded her letter by stating, “Dance studio owners are concerned that remaining closed could result in the permanent closure of their businesses and livelihoods. They are asking you to let dance studios with COVID-19 safety protocols in place to re-open, allowing our young people train in dance.”