Olds, Alta. restaurant backs down, removes anti-restrictions sign

CALGARY –

An Olds, Alta. restaurant, within 24 hours of posting a sign suggesting it would not comply with the UCP government’s latest COVID-19 restrictions, now says it will abide by the new rules on Monday.

The sign, posted at the Our Flames restaurant in Olds, Alta. on Saturday said it didn’t matter whether or not its patrons are vaccinated, unvaccinated or even wearing masks or not – all would be served.

“We will not be asking for personal health information,” it continued. “Please be kind to one another!”

The sign was a direct reference to the province’s new restrictions on restaurants, bars and other businesses, giving them the choice of complying with its restriction exemption program (REP) or abiding with a laundry list of COVID-19 guidelines that include reduced capacity, curfews on service and more.

However, within 24 hours of images of the sign circulating on social media, Our Flames said on Facebook it would comply with the new rules.

“On Monday, September 20, 2021, we’ve decided to opt into the Restrictions Exemption Program set forth by the Alberta government,” it wrote.

“We’ve thought long and hard about what to do come Monday. This pandemic has taken a toll on all of us and our team cannot afford another lockdown. We need to implement these procedures so our staff can maintain a livelihood through all of this.”

It asks that anyone who sees the image of the poster on social media not to “call in and harass” workers at the restaurant and instead contact Alberta Health Services (AHS) for responses to any questions they might have.

“We are looking forward to serving you safely and hopefully everything can put behind us very soon. We’ve had enough too.”

CTV News reached out to the restaurant for further comment on the signage, but the owners have not responded as of the publication of this story.

AHS has also been contacted for a comment on the situation.

BLACKFALDS, ALTA. REJECTS REP

The Town of Blackfalds said Friday that it would not be adopting the restriction exemption program at all of its facilities on Monday.

Instead, it would reduce the capacity to one-third fire code occupancy and implement social distancing and mandatory face covering requirements.

(Supplied/Town of Blackfalds)

“User groups who will be renting facilities as separate entities will be able to implement the REP for their own events or keep with the one-third capacity at their own discretion,” it wrote in a statement on its website.

Youth programming is expected to remain unchanged, the town said, and masks will be required.

Adult fitness classes and programs are postponed for next week until Blackfalds receives further clarification from Alberta Health Services.

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