brass rail covid

Toronto Public Health says Brass Rail wasn't following social distancing rules

In perhaps the least shocking news ever, the Toronto strip club where 550 patrons were potentially exposed to COVID-19 earlier this month has been found to be defying mandatory health and safety rules amid the pandemic, Toronto Public Health (TPH) has revealed.

Apparently, at the Brass Rail Tavern — which only reopened to the public at the end of July — social distancing and contact tracing guidelines laid out by the city and the province have not been properly heeded.

After being alerted to the fact that an employee at the Yonge and Bloor establishment had tested positive for the virus, TPH conducted an inspection on Thursday and found inadequate physical distancing between tables and also between staff and customers. Visitor information logs were also found to be incomplete.

The club has been issued a notice of non-compliance, though is still operating as of Friday when an alert was sent out to the public, CTV News reports.

Meanwhile, residents have had their fair share of fun with the story and adding a little levity to the situation on social media.

Some are wondering about how well the contact tracing will go given the fact that those who attend strip clubs are often hoping to be discreet about it — and are worried for the fate of a few hundred relationships in the city.

"Who knew there were 550 Seymour Butts out and about that week?! I have a funny feeling there may be some fake names and numbers in those logs," one Twitter user said.

"Marriage counselling is going to see a spike in Toronto once the contact tracing is complete," another added.

Others are giving sarcastic props to Toronto, commenting on the idiocy and desperation that drives one to visit a crowded, newly-reopened strip club amid a health crisis.

The topic even came up during Doug Ford's daily press conference this afternoon, with the premier saying that strip clubs have to abide by the same stringent directives as any other business.

"You've gotta practice social distancing, you've gotta put on a mask. I know it sounds ironic... it sounds crazy when you're talking about the Brass Rail, but you've just gotta do it," Ford said.

He too seemed anxious for the strip club aficionados who may have been indulging behind a partner's back, and for those partners themselves.

"I feel sorry for the people who go to their house and have to say they were at the Brass Rail, that's who I feel sorry for. I feel sorry for the spouses, seriously. I wouldn't want to be at the end of that one."

Anyone who visited the Brass Rail during following times should monitor themselves for respiratory symptoms for two weeks:

  • Aug. 4 between 7 p.m. and 2:30 a.m. on Aug. 5 
  • Aug. 5 between 8 p.m. and 3 a.m. on Aug. 6
  • Aug. 7 from 9 p.m. to 3 a.m. on Aug. 8
  • Aug. 8 from 7 p.m. to 2:30 a.m. on Aug. 9

Known close contacts of the employee have been asked to self-isolate and get tested for the communicable disease.

According to a TPH release, the club is cooperating to ensure that it adheres to all Stage 3 protocols moving forward, mask-clad lapdances from two metres away and all.

Lead photo by

Dominic Bugatto

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