Letter to Woodbine horsepeople from Woodbine Entertainment
Dear Horse People:
Woodbine is doing everything we can to avoid a case of COVID-19 on the backstretch including daily screening and taking temperatures between the hours of 4:00 am – 10:00 am and screening again 3:00 pm – 9:00 pm of all people entering the backstretch area. Thank you for your cooperation to date.
There are no known cases to date.
We are learning more each day about the spread of this virus, and the existence of people carrying and spreading the virus, without exhibiting any symptoms.
As such, the concept of staying 6 feet (2m) away from another person is critical to lower the chances of infecting everyone in your barn.
Frequent handwashing is also critical.
Disinfecting door knobs, stall latches, any metal and frequently touched areas
We must ask each of you to do your part: “See something, say something.” Examples: exercise riders walking too closely on horseback to and from the track. People gathering around a horse in the stall, gathering or standing together in a tack room etc. Gathering is a natural behavior for everyone, but we cannot let our guard down. The 6 foot minimum will help preserve the health our workforce.
If you need access to hand sanitizer, cleaning etc, please call or email the Stall Office at firstname.lastname@example.org.
With the currently modelling of the virus released today by the experts and the Province, it may only be a matter of time until we have a COVID-19 case on our backstretch.
Woodbine, with the support of the HBPA, is asking for the following from Trainers:
Step 1: Trainers, please be the eyes and ears with your staff, and to report anyone with any illness immediately to East Gate Security. Security will perform a secondary assessment and provide your staff with access to Telehealth Ontario by phone 1-866-797-0000, where their symptoms can be screened. If there is a confirmed case of COVID-19 in your barn, your entire team and those that have been in close contact, will be subject to a mandatory 14 day isolation at home. Containing the spread will be mandatory, and the only way to continue operations.
Step 2: We are asking ALL trainers to create back-up horse care plans for their operations. This may include a ‘helping hand’ system within your barn or amongst other trainers’ staff to get through the 14 day isolation period.
Should the COVID-19 patient (or person exposed ie; roommate, coworker) be a current Dormitory resident, Woodbine has created a set of procedures to service the resident during this 14+ days of mandatory isolation, including daily meal delivery, basic care and personal care as required.
Step 3: In the unlikely event of an outbreak on the backstretch, where the cases become too difficult to manage, we are asking ALL TRAINERS to develop an Emergency Back-Up Plan for your operations including off-site stabling and care for your horses. It is Woodbine’s intention, with the support of the HBPA, to continue keeping the backstretch operating for the daily care of horses. However, during this Pandemic, you must make a plan for your horses, for every scenario, including Evacuation.
These plans do not need to be presented to us, but you need to have taken the time to think through a plan, and find potential alternative stabling, should this be required. Hopefully these plans will never have to be enacted, but the process is critical.
We understand the difficulties and worries each of you are facing. We are all doing our best to keep our horse people, all suppliers and essential Woodbine staff safe during this pandemic so that we can get back to racing, as soon as possible based on the government guidelines.
We are all dependent upon one another on a good day, and during these tougher days, this is the truest statement of all. Stay vigilant, and stay well so we can thrive again together as soon as possible.
Thank you and take care,