March 16, 2020
Festivals canned as social distancing the new normal
Organisers have cancelled this week’s Polyfest, which would have brought together more than 100,000 Auckland secondary school pupils and spectators together for four days of cultural performances.
Aorere College principal Greg Pierce says the decision was made after consultation with the Auckland Regional Public Health Service about the risk posed by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Cabinet yesterday agreed any gathering of more than 500 people should not go ahead until the risk has passed.
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says the ban applies to non-essential events such as festivals, fairs, sporting, religious and cultural events.
She says social distancing needs to be the new normal.
The ban will affect a number of major Maori hui over the next few weeks, including the traditional Tūhoe Hui Ahurei over Easter.
The Turangawaewae Regatta, which was due to be held this Saturday, is also cancelled.
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