STATEMENT ADVISING ADMINISTRATORS AND IMAMS OF MOSQUES IN COVID-19 HOTSPOTS TO REDUCE CONGREGATION ACTIVITIES WITH IMMINENT SECOND WAVE
For Immediate Release
September 17, 2020 | Muharram 29, 1442 AH
Bismillah hirRahman nirRaheem
In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.
Abundant Peace, Blessings and Salutations upon the Prophet Muhammad (S)
Assalamu Alaikum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakatuh,
May the peace, mercy and blessings of Allah be with you
Dear Respected Imams and Mosque Administrators,
We are grateful for all the hard work that you have invested in implementing measures during such unprecedented times and that have allowed Canadian Muslims to return to pray safely. We need to continue proactive measures and remain vigilant to keep our places of worship open.
Numbers have begun increasing in several regions within Ontario, British Columbia, Alberta and Quebec, raising concerns of a second wave of COVID-19 infections. Young adults are representing a higher proportion of individuals diagnosed with COVID-19, and this is partly due to increased gathering sizes in different settings as government rules have relaxed. Many young adults have mild or no symptoms, and could unknowingly spread the infection to vulnerable individuals. As schools reopen and flu season arrives, cases of COVID-19 and other viral respiratory illnesses in the community are expected to rise in the coming weeks.
We strongly recommend mosques and Islamic centres within regions identified as hotspots of COVID-19 implement Phase B measures if they are open, as soon as possible and before September 24th, 2020. This would be in accordance with our updated guidance document, Keeping Our Mosques and Communities Open & Safe During the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Framework for Canadian Mosques and Islamic Centres, released on August 29, 2020 and attached herein.
In addition to the latest regional guidelines for houses of worship, key safety measures in Phase B include:
* Only 1 Jummua prayer
* Sunnah/Nafl prayers at home
* All classes and events held virtually
* Children and high-risk persons (elderly or with chronic medical conditions) pray at home
* Maintain best practices for disinfection, screening and contact tracing
Being proactive now and ensuring all safety measures are in place and readily adapted to the evolving situation will save lives and may prevent mosques from closing their doors again. Thank you for your cooperation.