Ibiza Zouk Dance Festival 2020

Corona virus plan and Policy

Is this real life? Yes, it is. But, social media posts from your friends are not the best source of information. Instead, you should look for information from the World Health Organization and your local public health agencies for information about the coronavirus and the latest transmission updates in your area.

What is happening?

The novel Coronavirus is currently undergoing sustained worldwide transmission. Each area is at a different stage of transmission, and the response from each region will likely affect the outcomes for that area.

The key words to watch for when reading about transmission in a community or region are the words “localized transmission”. This means that the virus is no longer traceable to a known contact; instead, it is “running free” in the community. At that point, containing infected people is no longer a viable management strategy by itself.

So far, many governments are trying to implement “social distancing” at the local transmission stage to reduce the severity of the mass outbreak. This means keeping at least 6 feet (2 metres) between you and others, as well as limiting your community exposure.

What does that mean for social dancing?

Currently, it appears that for each person with COVID-19 (the novel Coronavirus disease), they infect two others. Partner social dancing, especially Brazilian Zouk, Bachata, Tango, Kizomba, and others, involve people in close physical contact. This means that transmission rate could be higher among social dancers. Social dancers also tend to travel large distances to dance events, which compounds their exposure risk. 

What should we do as a community? 

To understand Coronavirus and the public response so far, we need to be aware of a few cognitive biases innate to all humans. 

The first is “normalcy bias” during disasters. Many people tend to believe things will function as they always do. This means they underestimate the likelihood of a disaster and its subsequent effects. This is why, for example, people stay home during hurricanes or wildfires despite evacuation notices. 

The second (and opposite) cognitive bias is the “overreaction”. This means that people panic and overreact in ways that may not aid the situation. For example, the current trend of individuals buying up medical masks and depleting overall community stock qualify as an overreaction. 

The third cognitive bias is “attribute substitution bias”. Reputable studies show that humans instinctively try to use as little mental effort as possible. In these cases, people may base a decision on intuition or convenience instead of facts and reflection. Or, they may inadvertently answer an easier question instead of the bigger, harder one. For example, instead of answering whether it’s a good idea to go out dancing, they may respond “I’m carrying hand sanitizer”. This bias makes situations like a novel virus and a once-in-a-lifetime outbreak challenging. With information changing daily, heaps of uncertainty, and inconsistent public health messaging, many of us are at risk of ‘checking out’ of dealing with the real issues.

The Reliable Information So Far

To simplify the search for information, below is a summary of the information that we and our professional colleagues view as accurate and reliable (so far):

  • Coronavirus primarily spreads through respiratory droplet/secretions (sneezing, coughing).
  • There are a few reports of contact transmission (touching things), airborne transmission (breathing it in), and asymptomatic transmission (transmission by people with no symptoms).
  • Coronavirus is not influenza (“the flu”). The main differences are:
    • Unlike the flu, most of the world has no immunity to Coronavirus
    • The annual flu’s case fatality rate is around 0.1%. Current World Health Organization estimates place Coronavirus’ case fatality rate at 3.9% (at the time of writing). Even though this rate may drop as more people are tested, it is not comparable to influenza.
    • This Coronavirus has only been infecting people for approximately three months. We do not know if it will improve in the Spanish Balearic summer.

How Coronavirus Impacts Us

After consulting with infectious disease and public health specialists about social partner dancing, we would suggest the following:

If you are a social dancer and/or event attendee:

Please refrain from attending social events if:

  • You have any flu-like symptoms, including fever, cough, or difficulty breathing
  • You returned from travel in the last 3 weeks or live in an area with sustained local transmission (not just a travel ban/warning).
  • You have had close physical contact with a person currently under investigation for COVID-19, or whom is a confirmed case of COVID-19

If you are healthy and do attend a social or event, please wash your hands. The best way is with soap and water. Second is an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol content. If you are able to wash your hands, use soap and water for a minimum 20 seconds (long enough to sing “Happy Birthday” to yourself twice) as frequently as possible. Avoid touching your face and avoid touching other people’s faces.

Event, Class, and Social Cancellations

Please be understanding that these are extraordinary times, and that events/classes/socials you have paid for may need to be modified or cancelled – perhaps without the ability to get refunds on flights, hotels, event tickets and other expenses. That is (understandably) a disappointing and frustrating experience.

At the same time, please understand that event organizers may not be able to recuperate all their costs, and if they issue full refunds to everyone, then they may be in a financially detrimental situation – up to and including not being able to run the event again.

So please, be understanding and try to accept the situation as it evolves. Events may be cancelled or changed on short notice, and your travel plans may change last minute. Again, these are extraordinary times.

If you are a traveling artist:

We want to acknowledge that your job can be very difficult. You spend your days and weeks crossing international borders and time zones, and your work can be physically, mentally, and emotionally demanding. You are also independent contractors who have no job security. Your physical health is crucial. A lost economic opportunity due to infectious control measures is unfortunate. 

However, please view these measures as protection for you as well. Your health is your job asset. When entering new contract negotiations, consider negotiating a clause which allows cancellation on your part if you become concerned about your exposure risk to COVID-19 as a part of a work contract. 

We want to also take this time to acknowledge that event organization is hard work, that is often financially neutral or at a loss. It is done for the love of the dance and the community. None of us ever thought we would be put in a position of making mini-public health decisions. But again, these are extraordinary times. The additional challenges lies within the fact that the virus has just started transmitting and we don’t have a complete picture – yet.

This post freaked me out. What should I do now?

Things will get better, but they will get worse before they get better. No one knows how long it will take, or how many people will be affected. Anyone who claims to know that with certainty is misinformed at best.

The answer to what you should do depends on where you live. Listen to the public health officials in your area, and try to critically evaluate messages from popular and social media. There is a lot of false information out there on both sides of the spectrum ranging from denial/dismissal to hysteria (from normalcy to overreaction bias).

Neither ends of that spectrum are helpful right now. Stay calm, remember your own likely cognitive bias towards dismissing complex, ever-changing information (the COVID-19 cases evolving every day), and try to sit with the inherent uncertainty of this situation. Continue your life – but perform a risk assessment of your situation. Your own risk assessment on whether to participate or host any public activity should depend on the area where you live, its transmission rates, your personal health, your profession, and your regular physical contacts’ health (such as elderly parents, roommates, children, or close friends). 

We are all in this together. And remember:

  • Do wash your hands, and try not to touch your face. It’s your best defence.
  • Don’t hoard masks, they don’t protect you – they stop sick people from spreading their germs around, which we will all need and appreciate.

Plan and Policy

Attendee Illness and Pass Transfers

Pre-Event:

Please do not attend Ibiza Zouk Dance Festival if you have any contagious illness.

You are absolutely not permitted to attend the event if any of the following apply to you:

  • You have an acute illness (for example, cold, flu, or viral infection) at the time of the Ibiza Zouk Dance Festival and Coronavirus has not been excluded as a diagnosis;
  • You are from a region with prevalent local Coronavirus transmission;
  • You are from, have travelled to, or transited through an area with a Spanish level 3 advisory for Coronavirus (more info https://www.rtve.es/noticias/20200311/mapa-del-coronavirus-espana/2004681.shtml) or higher in the 21 days prior to the event; or,
  • You have been in contact with a confirmed or suspected Coronavirus case in the 21 days prior to the Ibiza Zouk Dance Festival.

Depending on your unique situation, we will evaluate the circumstances and might decide to waive pass transfer fees and allow you to apply your pass to the following Ibiza Zouk Dance Festival in any of the above cases. We will do the same if you decide not to attend the event and transfer your ticket because you are or will be in close contact with someone who is immunosuppressed.

Please note that we may ask to see documentation or information proving that you fall into one of the above categories.

Attendees symptons at the Event:

If you become symptomatic during the event, you will not be permitted to continue attending the event until you have been examined, tested, and cleared for further participation. Depending on your unique situation, we will evaluate the circumstances and might decide to waive pass transfer fees and allow you to apply your pass to the following Ibiza Zouk Dance Festival.

Attendees illness after the Event:

If you attend Ibiza Zouk Dance Festival and are diagnosed with Coronavirus within 21 days of the event, you must let us know as soon as possible so that we can inform other attendees.

Coronavirus Event Precautions Plan

Ibiza Zouk Dance Festival will take the following precautions at the event:

  • Symptomatic Individuals: Any individual with suspicious symptoms will not be allowed to attend the event until they can be examined and cleared. That person’s roommates may also be asked to quarantine themselves.
  • Hand Hygiene: Hand sanitizer will be provided at water refill stations, food stations, the registration desk, and workshop/dance entry points. Hand sanitation will be mandatory upon entry to rooms. Hand washing frequently and fully is strongly recommended. Announcements will be made at various intervals encouraging this.
  • Common surfaces (microphones, etc) will be wiped down with a disinfectant wipe between users.
  • No disposable cups will be provided to limit potential cross-contamination. For those who do not have a reusable bottle or cup, a water fountain is on site and there will be wipes available at registration that you can use to clean the touchpoints.

Coronavirus Event Cancellation Plan

Pre-Event Cancellation Plan:

It is our responsibility to ensure that all our attendees are as safe as possible. In the event of a public health emergency, this may involve canceling or postponing the event. We will monitor the evolving situation closely. At this time, it is impossible to know what the situation will be at the end of May 2020. If public health authorities determine to suspend public transport, or other group gatherings, we will cancel or postpone the event. This is to ensure that our community remains as safe as possible.

Most of the expenses have already been made and we have no guarantees to get everything back. Given that we cannot refund. Please be understanding that these are extraordinary times, and that events you have paid for may need to be modified, cancelled or postponed. In this scenario we will evaluate the specific circumstances and possibilities, for example offering a special discount for the next edition of the Ibiza Zouk Dance Festival or transfer an x% of the 2020 ticket value to the next edition of the Ibiza Zouk Dance Festival. Please be aware we will do everything in our power to achieve the best possible solution for everyone while still maintaining the opportunity to continue organizing the Ibiza Zouk Dance Festival in future years to come.

Please check the Ibiza Zouk Dance Festival Policy Rules periodically for changes.

If a Case is Diagnosed During the Event:

If any case of COVID-19 is confirmed during the event, we will work with local health authorities to manage the situation. This may include quarantining participants or venues where the event took place, and may result in the rest of the event being cancelled. All attendees are expected to comply with the directions of public health officials. In this scenario we will evaluate the specific circumstances and possibilities, for example offering a special discount for the next edition of the Ibiza Zouk Dance Festival. Please be aware we will do everything in our power to achieve the best possible solution for everyone while still maintaining the opportunity to continue organizing the Ibiza Zouk Dance Festival in future years to come.

If an Attendee is Diagnosed After the Event:

If Ibiza Zouk Dance Festival becomes aware of any individual diagnosed with COVID-19 within 21 days of the Ibiza Zouk Dance Festival end date, we will notify all participants so that they may take the necessary precautions to manage their individual situation and quarantine themselves.