An Abbotsford ‘lifestyle club’ has held several events since August, including a ‘MASK-erade’ event. Pixabay photo

Nightclubs are banned, but a Lower Mainland sex club is open during COVID-19

‘Lifestyle club’ says its pandemic precautions keep participants safe

As nightclubs and banquet halls remain closed, an Abbotsford swingers club has resumed operations, saying their COVID-19 precautions are stringent enough to protect guests from transmitting the virus.

Club Passion calls itself a “lifestyle club” and has advertised multiple events since the end of August. The club has developed COVID-19 precautions, encourages the use of masks, and says it’s abiding by health guidelines.

But it also has indoor areas for socialization and continues to operate an “orgy room” at a time when health authorities have closed down nightclubs and begged people to limit socialization and reduce the number of close contacts outside one’s immediate family.

And it’s unclear what oversight exists regarding the facility because, despite charging for admission and describing the presence of “staff” on site, it has neither a personal health licence from Fraser Health nor a business licence from the City of Abbotsford.

Multiple people have contacted The Abbotsford News with worries about the continued operation of the site. (The News was not aware of, and did not receive any complaints about, the club before COVID-19 hit.)

RELATED: B.C. to shut down nightclubs, banquet halls; limit late-night alcohol sales at bars

The club’s COVID-19 precautions say social “bubbles” can only include a maximum of six people, and that two people from different bubbles must wear masks if they get within two metres of one another.

“The Passion Club upholds the safety and preventative standards that have been recommended to us by the BC Centre for Disease Control (BCCDC) and other local health departments,” the operators of the club said in an email to The News. “To support the provincial effort, we have taken the necessary steps to ensure our members’ safety by adapting and controlling our venue’s usual practices.”

The email stated that the temperatures of guests and their contact information are taken at the door, and only six people are allowed in any one private area. They say they have also created no-stopping areas and encourage guests to practise social distancing.

The operators didn’t explain how bubbles are determined or what parameters are in place to ensure group sex complies with COVID-19 guidelines.

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry has said people should limit the number of non-family members they socialize with to six people. But those six people, Henry has said, must be consistent and cannot change regularly.

In their email to The News, the operators wrote: “Since the club’s creation, we have worked with local health agencies to ensure a safe and enjoyable environment for our community. In today’s ever-changing environment, our commitment to engage in safe practices is ensured by the leadership and passion of our management team.”

A Fraser Health spokesperson wrote that Fraser Health regulates businesses that serve food or operate a personal service establishment, and that other businesses with municipal licences can operate as long as they have a COVID-19 plan. The spokesperson wrote that “all businesses are expected to follow public health orders.”

A Ministry of Health spokesperson deferred to Fraser Health for comment. A City of Abbotsford said the organization does not have a business licence.

RELATED: Nightclub closures, liquor sale limits a ‘punch in the gut,’ B.C. industry group says

Do you have something to add to this story, or something else we should report on? Email:
tolsen@abbynews.com


@ty_olsen
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Coronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The last forum before the election on Saturday focused on health care.
Boundary-Similkameen candidates talk health care over digital forum

The Support Our Health Care Society hosted the forum

The Regional District of Okanagan Similkameen is planning to implement transit service in the West Bench area in September, 2021. (Black Press file photo)
Regional district to bring transit service to West Bench in 2021

Residents of area near Penticton will be consulted before plans are finalized

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)
Interior Health reports 18 COVID-19 cases, highest daily count since July

The total of COVID-19 cases in the region is now at 662

Carmi Elementary students voted through CIVIX Students Vote. (Lesley Evans photo)
Penticton students have their say in B.C. election

Twelve schools, including Carmi Elementary participated in Student Vote

A Kelowna clinic decided to immunize their patients in a drive-thru flu clinic earlier this month. (Twila Amato - Black Press Media)
Interior Health anticipates increase in flu vaccinations this season

Some 300,000 doses of flu vaccine ready for distribution across Southern Interior

B.C. provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry gives a daily briefing on COVID-19 cases at an almost empty B.C. Legislature press theatre in Victoria, B.C., on March 25, 2020. (Don Craig/B.C. government)
B.C. sees 223 new COVID-19 cases, now 2,009 active

Two new care home outbreaks in Surrey, Burnaby

Thanks to efforts by a Kelowna shelter and Elections BC, anyone who wishes to can vote in the 2020 BC Provincial Election, even if they don’t have a fixed address. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck)
Kelowna group ensures people experiencing homelessness can vote

Shelter supervisor says voting ‘a fundamental right’ even for those without a fixed address

(Big White Ski Resort photo)
Big White receives 21 cm of snow in 24 hours

Resort’s snow base 41 cm deep, one month until opening day

The deer were allegedly shot within Princeton town limits, late at night. Black Press File Photo.
Armed man, in full camouflage, allegedly shoots deer in downtown Princeton

‘The list of charges goes on and on,’ said RCMP Sgt. Rob Hughes

100 Mile Conservation officer Joel Kline gingerly holds an injured but very much alive bald eagle after extracting him from a motorist’s minivan. (Photo submitted)
B.C. driver thought he retrieved a dead bald eagle – until it came to life in his backseat

The driver believed the bird to be dead and not unconscious as it turned out to be

Members of Summerland council and municipal staff were present on Oct. 22 to officially open the expanded Summerland landfill facility. From left are manager of environmental services Candace Pilling, Coun. Erin Carlson, Coun. Marty Van Alphen, acting mayor Doug Holmes, Coun. Richard Barkwill and Coun. Erin Trainer. (John Arendt - Summerland Review)
Changes made to entrance of Summerland landfill

Upgrades came at cost of $500,000

Chastity Davis-Alphonse took the time to vote on Oct. 21. B.C’s general Election Day is Saturday, Oct. 24. (Chastity Davis-Alphonse Facebook photo)
B.C. reconciliation advocate encourages Indigenous women to vote in provincial election

Through the power of voice and education Chastity Davis-Alphonse is hopeful for change

White Rock RCMP Staff Sgt. Kale Pauls has released a report on mental health and policing in the city. (File photos)
White Rock’s top cop wants to bill local health authority for lengthy mental-health calls

‘Suggestion’ included in nine-page review calling for ‘robust’ support for healthcare-led response

Most Read