COVID-FAQS for Buddhafield 2021

This is our best attempt to answers the most likely questions... please read to the end and see how it all lands with you. 

What happens if I test positive for COVID/ have symptoms/ am self-isolating and cannot attend?

We always consider illness and other reasons not to attend as special circumstances and normally offer refunds. This would come under that general policy. 

What happens if I have a high temperature at the gate? 

If your skin temperature registers high on the infrared thermometer, it will be checked again. If still high, it will need to be taken again via a tympanic device to get a proper core reading. We expect this to be incredibly rare, if not non-existent, during the event. 
If you have a high temperature due to illness, it’s something you can feel and not something you will likely be surprised by. If you feel like you have a high temperature, we hope you will stay at home, get well and contact us for a refund as per the previous question. 

What happens if I don’t want to have my temperature checked?

The temperature checks will be non-invasive and non-contact. Everyone who wants to enter the site will have one. 
If this does not work for you, you may wish to consider joining us another year. See question below for information on this. 

Can I get a negative COVID test result and gain entry after a high temperature reading? 

If you have a high temperature, you need to go home, get well and contact us for a refund. We hope this doesn't happen. 

Will my child need to have their temperature checked? 

All folk, including the little folk, will need to have a temperature check to gain entry to site. We will make this as quick and casual as possible. You can take their temperature if you/ they prefer. We do not expect that you will have a child with a high temperature unexpectedly and it will be dealt with in a calm, kind and discreet manner if they do. 

Will I get a refund if I have to go home again after a temperature check? 

In the unlikely instance that you are asked to go home due to a high temperature, we will offer a refund on your ticket. 

Will I have my travel/ other expenses refunded if I have to go home again? 

Buddhafield cannot take responsibility for any other expenses incurred as a result of travelling to the festival and then not being able to attend. 

Do I have to wear a mask if I am exempt? 

If you are medically exempt from wearing a mask, you will not have to wear one. You may be asked if you are medically exempt but you will not have to disclose any personal medical details. We’ll do our best to hold a space of kindness where you are not continually challenged about this. You may find this more likely if you choose to wear a lanyard or badge identifying your exempt status but, of course, this is not a requirement. 

Where will I have to wear a mask/ social distance? 

Social distancing measures will be in place during the event. This will apply in some spaces and also to queues. There will also be a one-way system in places in certain areas of the event where the tracks are narrow. 
Where social distancing cannot be maintained, masks are required unless you are exempt. This will be clear upon entry to certain spaces. The rules will largely be the same as they are out in the world right now - inside shops, inside enclosed spaces, during face-to-face therapies etc. masks will be required. In your personal spaces - tents and live-ins -  it will be up to you to follow the government guidelines regarding mixing of households etc. 
We know that human instinct towards contact means that boundaries around these things can waver. However, we ask you to consider the spectrum of feelings and vulnerabilities around this and err on the side of caution. This is not dissimilar to physical contact considerations at any other time. 

Will I be challenged about this during the event? 

Our stewards and peacekeepers will be keeping a gentle eye on things during the event – as they always do. You may be kindly asked to be aware of certain guidelines in various places and spaces during the event if it looks like you have not noticed or have forgotten in the joy of the moment. We ask you not to take this personally and to offer compassion to those who have chosen to help us hold the event in this way. We’d like any encounter like this to be consciousness-raising so that Buddhafield is a temporary haven from divisiveness and difficulty. That’s our aspiration and intent. There’s lots of healing potential here. 

Will I get a refund if all this isn’t for me? 

We recognise the challenges. We’re confident that we can create a beautiful and connecting event together - albeit an unusual one. However, if it all seems like too much and you don’t think you’ll be able to integrate the measures into your experience, get in touch to talk about a refund or to secure your place for Buddhafield 2022.

Why is Buddhafield taking these measures at all? 

In order to go ahead, we have to take ‘reasonable measures’ to prevent the occurrence and/or spread of COVID at our event. These have been discussed and investigated at length with our health and safety and compliance team. They are the measures we can achieve and which will be effective. These have all been agreed with the local council and they are the reason we have been granted our license. 

Why isn’t Buddhafield doing more – like vaccine checks, lateral flow tests or vaccine passports for example? 

We are not required to take any of these measures in order to be allowed to go ahead. With what we have planned, we feel we are meeting our duty of care to our attendees. Some of these measures, like vaccine passports, have no current precedent and so we could not implement a policy like this at our event. 
We do suggest that people take a lateral flow COVID test 3 or 4 days before attending and if the test is positive to arrange a PCR test to confirm the result. Please bear in mind that by taking this extra step you will contribute to the possibility of an event that is free from any issues. Lateral flow test kits can be obtained free of charge from most pharmacies, or by post from this government website: Having a test will not mean you are exempt from temperature checks - it’s just good to do. 

I feel like all this isn’t very Buddhafield/ logical/ plays into XYZ

Well, here we are – this is a difficult point to meet as the answer is so nuanced. We’re all trying to grasp at some sort of certainty or safety. Regulations that are designed to manage millions of people don’t necessarily feel right to every individual. How do we navigate between the two? Certainly not going to be able to answer that here. The spectrum of feelings and thoughts in this team is as wide and varied as it is in the world at large. 
However, Buddhafield is a public event that will still hold a couple of thousand people even at half-capacity. We are therefore subject to certain laws and guidelines. We have to follow these to exist in the way that we do. 
As always, your sense of autonomy and freedom exists inside you. This is what we try and cultivate through the Buddhist ethics and practice that underpins this event. 

I have another question…

By all means, email and we’ll talk. We want to meet as many concerns as possible. However, please be aware that at this stage we cannot change anything. We’ve managed to get the go ahead to put on our events when so many others have not. This has taken a lot of heartfelt work and consideration. 
Conversations like this will go on till the event happens and for a long time afterwards…. and underneath it all, we feel pretty lucky to be able to have them with folk like you.