A nightclub in Toronto’s Fashion District is facing charges under the province’s Emergency Act following an alleged indoor party with no physical distancing over the weekend.
According to Toronto police, officers became aware that Goldie nightclub, at 619 King Street West, was operating indoors on the evening of June 26, in contravention of Ontario’s Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act (EMCPA).
According to Toronto police, the club does not have an outdoor patio or seating area and was letting patrons in through the rear of the club.
The club does not have a permit for outdoor service of any kind and no social distancing measures were being enforced, police said.
Toronto police estimated that between 125 and 150 people were spotted inside the club, which operates out of a heritage townhouse on King Street West, near Portland Street – a trendy area for Toronto’s nightlife scene.
The owner, manager, and corporation are now facing a charge of failing to comply with an order made during a declared emergency.
Toronto police said they have also passed information from their investigation on to the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO).
The nightclub could not immediately be reached for comment.
The provincial government invoked the EMCPA back in March because of the COVID-19 pandemic and the state of emergency has been extended until at least July 15. Among other things, it prohibits gatherings of more than 10 people under most circumstances.
Bar and restaurant patios have been allowed to reopen under strict guidelines, as have many businesses. But indoor clubs are not currently permitted to operate as usual.
Public health officials have warned that the city and the province need to remain vigilant as more businesses reopen.
In particular, Premier Doug Ford has pointed to a massive spike in cases in some U.S. states with more liberal policies around the pandemic as an example of what should be avoided.