Furnal Equinox COVID-19 Information and Policies

Last updated: October 26, 2022

We’ve put together a lot of information for you about how COVID-19 issues will affect our plans for the convention. We will be providing information on those changes as they happen, so be sure to follow our social media
announcement for updates.

Convention Policies

All attendees must agree to our policies, including COVID policies, to complete their registration.
The policy will appear as a mandatory checkbox on the registration form. 

These policies are subject to change and we will provide updates through our social media channels and on our website with as much notice as possible. 

To align with current policies within the province of Ontario, we are considering relaxing some of our COVID policies from last year. However, the public health situation may change between now and the date of the convention.

As a precaution, Furnal Equinox will still require proof of vaccination and masking for now. We will not be checking/requiring boosters but it is highly recommended that you follow public health guidance for your demographic. The policy will be reassessed and updated closer to the date of the convention. Even if the requirements are rescinded on a later date, vaccination and masking are encouraged.

It is possible that we may bring some removed policies back at our discretion if the situation calls for it.

We are committed to doing more than the minimum out of an abundance of caution, and with the knowledge that these efforts are an effective way to reduce risk to our community.

In order to keep our attendees as healthy and safe as possible, our event will have the following policies in place:

We will not tolerate willful violations of this policy, or abuse of those upholding it.

The following actions will result in a ban from Furnal Equinox:

  • Repeated and willful attempts to violate, undermine, or circumvent our COVID policies;
  • Abuse, harassment, threats, or intimidation directed at an individual for following the policy;
  • Abuse, harassment, threats, or intimidation directed at any FE volunteer, FE staff member, or venue staff member for their enforcement of this policy.

Attendees must be fully vaccinated prior to attending the convention, no exceptions

You must be fully vaccinated according to your chosen vaccine’s dosage schedule. The last shot of the initial series must have occurred two weeks prior to attending the event. We will not be imposing requirements on boosters, but they are recommended.

For example, Johnson and Johnson requires only one shot in the initial vaccine series, so you would be considered fully vaccinated two weeks after that shot. Moderna and Pfizer vaccines require two shots so you would be considered fully vaccinated two weeks after the last shot.

We will not be requiring the QR code vaccination record this year as the provincial government is rolling back the infrastructure to verify them. We will accept any government/health authority issued vaccination record.

Masks are required in all public spaces 

Masks are required in the hotel and convention spaces at all times except as noted below. We will not be enforcing masks under fursuit heads but highly recommend that they be worn.

Your mask must fit securely to the head and cover the mouth and nose. Face shields, neck gaiters, scarves, bandanas, and other items that don’t fit securely are not acceptable on their own. Appropriate masks to use include N95 / KN95 respirators, medical masks (procedure or surgical masks), or non-medical masks. 

You may temporarily remove your mask when eating or drinking, or for other health and safety purposes (for example, administering medication). We ask you to keep your eating or drinking to food service areas (restaurants or convention-sponsored meals), designated eating areas (Dockside 2, tables in lounge, or soft seating in hotel), or water stations.

Performers at Opening and Closing Ceremonies, Dance Competition, Masquerade, and concert panels are permitted to remove their masks while performing or rehearsing, but should maintain physical distancing where practical.

Attendees with COVID-19 symptoms or positive test results at the convention must contact us.

Please refer to the provincial government’s recommendations “What to do if you’ve been exposed to COVID-19”. If you’re advised to stay home, please contact us and we’ll make arrangements to roll your registration over to next year.

How to prepare for 2023

Get vaccinated (and boosted)

Vaccinations are widely available to the public, including to minors as young as 6 months old. Please check with your local health authorities to find a vaccine near you. Children under 6 months old may not attend as they can not receive a vaccine.

 If you are eligible for a booster dose, we encourage you to get it to enhance your protection against COVID-19.

Bring extra sanitation supplies

While Furnal Equinox and the Westin Harbour Castle will provide public sanitation supplies (such as hand sanitizer), we encourage you to bring your own for personal use.

Practice good personal hygiene

Make sure to wash your hands on a regular basis, especially after touching anything in the common areas. You can do this by washing for 20 seconds with soap and warm water; or use hand sanitizer on a regular basis. You should also use clean/fresh masks wherever possible and dispose of soiled ones.

Practice wearing a mask

Practice properly wearing over your mouth and nose and breathing with a mask on, as you will be required to wear a mask when in public spaces of the event. Fursuiters should practice wearing a mask under their fursuit head.

Stay informed with
Furnal Equinox

Don’t forget to follow our official channels on Twitter, Facebook, and Telegram Announcements where we will be sharing all updates.

Frequent Asked Questions

General

What’s the likelihood of COVID-19 at FE 2023?

While we are planning to prevent spread as much as we can, we aren’t able to guarantee that Furnal Equinox 2023 will be 100% COVID-free. There are many factors outside our control. That’s why we’re relying on every attendee to do their part to follow all of our policies so we can have a successful convention while staying safe.

How often can we expect policies and guidelines to change?

We will be updating all content and information regarding COVID-19 policies and guidelines when changes are made, whether they come from our team or government updates. We’ll be updating this page as well as sending out messages through email and social media channels.

What else is Furnal Equinox doing to minimize the risk of COVID-19?

We will be implementing additional sanitation and preventative measures in high-traffic and high-contact areas, including areas such as Registration, Dealers Den, Lounge, and panel rooms. We will be working closely with our venue to clean and refresh all rooms and spaces on a frequent basis.

Vaccines & Masks

How can I get vaccinated for COVID-19?

COVID-19 vaccines are widely available. We recommend checking with your local public health unit for specifics, but here are a couple of resources we recommend:

I do not wish to wear a mask while in convention or public spaces, can I still attend?

If you choose not to follow the mandatory mask policy, you will not be able to participate in our in-person event this year. Our top priority is to make sure our attendees are as safe as possible while enjoying our convention.

For medical reasons, I cannot wear a mask. How can I submit a request for a medical exemption?

Attendees who cannot wear masks are asked to please reconsider attending our in-person event at this time. We realize this may limit some attendees, however we are particularly interested in the safety of those attending our convention. We invite you to participate in our virtual events this year and plan to review this policy for future events when public health guidelines allow.

n-person attendees are permitted to temporarily remove their mask for health and safety reasons (e.g. to administer inhalers or medication as they may require, or minor medical distress), so long as it does not disrupt others.

 If you are attending our in-person event and require accommodations, you may note it when you register online, or you can contact our Accessibility Department in advance of the event.

Do I need to bring a negative COVID-19 test result to the convention?

No, we do not require a negative COVID-19 test result to attend. However, we recommend actively self-monitoring your symptoms. Please do not attend the convention if you do not feel well.

Still have questions?

If you have any questions or concerns regarding our policy for COVID-19 at Furnal Equinox use the Contact Us form here.