COVID Safety Statement: Vashon Center for the Arts

(Thursday, November 18th, 2021)

Vashon Center for the Arts has taken a series of precautionary COVID safety steps after a staff member tested positive. We are working closely with the Vashon Emergency Operations Center and members of the Vashon Medical Reserve Corps (MRC).

· The affected staff member is safe at home, isolating with support from an MRC contact tracing expert.

· No VCA arts patrons have been in close contact with the affected person. There is no risk to the public from this situation.

· Eighteen VCA staff members who attended meetings and thus came into close contact with the affected person are following an MRC recommended quarantine and testing protocol. They will be tested at least twice during the quarantine period before returning to work.

· MRC is also tracing any potential secondary contacts such as family or friends, in case they also need to be advised to enter into the quarantine and testing protocol.

· The affected individual in this case is vaccinated and had the booster shot. Vashon Center for the Arts was an early adopter of a 100% vaccination requirement for all staff and volunteers, as well as attendees to events in the performing arts space. The current approved vaccines reduce chances of infection and provide very strong protection against hospitalization, but they do not provide perfect protection against COVID.

Where possible, quarantined staff will be working from home. However, a few VCA activities have been curtailed because staff are in quarantine and cannot perform their essential hands-on work.

· Most activities at the Blue Heron will be able to continue. Participants in any classes or other activities that will be affected by the staff quarantines will be notified directly. Contact tracing has not identified any COVID exposures among students at the Blue Heron.

· Tonight’s “la Finca” book reading with author Corky Parker will be postponed. An announcement will be made when a new date has been set.

· This weekend’s two performances of the Addams Family by Drama Dock and the VCA Musical Theatre Program will be postponed. An announcement will be made soon on a new date or, if patrons prefer, obtaining ticket refunds.

· The Kay White Hall has temporarily closed for a few days while volunteer staff is being arranged. If all goes as planned, the building will re-open next Wednesday, November 24th.

Please know that we are doing everything we can to stay safe and keep our patrons and staff safe. These are challenging times but we know that Vashon pulls together to meet difficult times head on. We are beyond grateful for the support we are fortunate to receive from this incredibly resilient community.

COVID Safety Protocol

Proof of vaccination is required for entry to performances in the Kay White Hall theatre and masks must be worn at all times.