When the Faroese society went into lockdown in March, bars, restaurants and nightclubs were told to close at 10 PM at the latest, and now, two months later, those same guidelines still apply, the Prime Minister, Bárður á Steig Nielsen announced at a press conference on Thursday.
But lately, bars and nightclubs haven’t been following them. This past weekend, several establishments in Tórshavn didn’t close down until after midnight. Last week, at a meeting between owners of bars and nightclubs in the Faroese capital, it was decided that they’d keep their establishments open till midnight during the weekends.
Because they’re dealing with guidelines and not a legal requirement, the authorities cannot force anyone to close up at 10 PM, but the Prime Minister said that those who do not follow the guidelines are responsible if anyone contracts COVID-19 on their premises and the disease starts spreading again.
That every establishment except bars and nightclubs is allowed to stay open as usual has become a joke, according to Remy á Kamarinum, owner of Tórshavn nightclubs Taboo and Basecamp.
– I don’t know what to say about our Prime Minister’s threat, and I don’t really have anything to say to those guidelines. If our Prime Minister really meant it, he could have made it a legal requirement and compensated us accordingly. I don’t see how it’s more dangerous to sit in a bar than going to the mall.
This, however, does not mean that the bars and nightclubs will be open as usual.
– We could choose to stay open until 4 AM, if we wanted to, but we don’t. We close at midnight, because we keep the guidelines in mind. We also take hygiene very seriously and require our customers to behave themselves, so yes, we are responsible, Remy á Kamarinum tells Hvat.fo.