how will we help
This will be a long post, but given the current global and domestic climate regarding Coronavirus, we believe it is important to have a discussion about the impact this could have on our industry, and therefore on the services we offer you. We always tell you that you are a part of our family, and therefore we have your health and safety at heart. So with the permission of our colleague Véronique Moisan Photographe, we inspired ourselves from her message to create our action plan to get through this difficult time.
We won't deny it, 2020 is not shaping up to be one of the best years in the world's archives. News feeds and conversations are overrun with words like pandemic, coronavirus, COVID-19, toilet paper, with a mixture of disbelief, fear and uncertainty. The different media sources seem to be giving divergent and confusing information, everything seems unreal and simply out of a science fiction movie.
But for us, in order to serve you well, we are committed to being transparent, open and available to you. We want you to know that we are with you through these uncertain times.
Like you, we are as concerned about our health and livelihood as you are. Let's be totally honest, photography does not become a priority in times of crisis. But we are positive that with the right action plan it is possible to continue to capture love and every day happiness.
So this is the approach we propose to take to deal with the situation, both logistically and personally. Please note that everything that follows could be revised in the future if necessary. The goal is to lighten your spirits on the photo level, and ensure that everyone remains healthy and safe.
WHAT WE WILL DO
- We will stay informed and keep up to date with provincial (Ontario and Quebec) and Federal Government recommendations, as well as local news.
- Our regular sessions will still go ahead as long as it is permitted by the authorities, but extra precautions will be taken. We will keep all sessions outside, and keep a safe distance of about 5 feet as much as possible. Don't worry, we have great gear and lenses, and this will allow us to be even more creative. If at any time we feel that the situation is getting to a point where it is just safer for everyone to stay home (prior to or after official decisions by governing bodies), we will reschedule and transfer your reservation fee to another date at no extra fees. Equally, if you feel you would rather postpone it, please reach out. Everyone's safety is our main concern. As for weddings, we will discuss and come up with a game plan to follow on your big day.
- As far as weddings are concerned, we remain at your disposal just the same. Please feel free to reach out to us at anytime if you need to discuss your fears about the situation and the impacts it may have on your wedding. We also suggest that you touch base with your venue and various vendors to ensure there will be no problems related to this pandemic that could adversely affect your celebration. We also invite you to consider taking a wedding insurance that could protect your investments in the event of supplier cancellations. Front Row Insurance offers a great coverage for weddings.
- We will be even more flexible with you with respect to moving events to future dates. If you are considering postponing or moving your event, please allow us to be part of your planning to ensure we are available for you on your new date. Communication is key. We know, your first installment is non refundable, but we will transfer it to your new date, and if you decide to cancel your event for now we will use it for an amazing session to celebrate you so nothing will be lost.
- This pandemic is putting a lot of financial strains on everyone, and we fully understand that. But do know that we will be flexible with regards to the payment of your contract balance. We can establish a payment plan or come up with other options that may work with all of us. We are in this together, as we are affected by this too!
- We will pay particular attention to washing our hands more frequently and avoid touching our faces during our sessions.
- Contrary to our familiar habit, we will avoid handshakes, hugs and kisses. However, you will not be spared equivalent gestures to compensate!
- We will replace our face-to-face meetings with virtual meet-ups through Zoom Meeting to avoid unnecessary travel.
- If there is anything about our health or travel that could affect you in any way, we will be honest with you and have a plan in place to minimize any possible impact.
- We will do everything in our power to minimize our exposure to the virus by avoiding public events as much as possible (medium and large), sick people, and confined public spaces for as long as it takes to defeat this virus.
WHAT YOU CAN DO
- Panic will do no good. Neither will stock piling on toilet paper. Make sure you have the essentials of fresh produce, stay hydrated, eat well, sleep well, we will get through this.
- Wash your hands often with warm running water and soap for at least 20 seconds.
- Observe good hygiene when coughing or sneezing either 1) Cover your mouth and nose with your arm to reduce the spread of germs. 2) If you use a tissue, dispose of it as soon as possible and wash your hands afterwards.
- Avoid visiting people in hospitals or long-term care facilities within 14 days of returning from a foreign country or if you are sick. And please be honest to others about your health and travels. Now is not the time to pretend that everything is fine. Think of others, those that may be more at risks and could die if you were to carry the virus.
- Avoid direct contact for greetings, such as handshakes, and use alternative practices.
- If your employer allows it, work from home to avoid travel.
- Masks are not an effective protective tool for the general population. Their use is indicated for patients with suspected infections and the health professionals who care for them.
- Isolation and self-distancing does not mean you have to disconnect with everyone. Stay in touch with your people! Just be a bit more creative! Social dates with friends on-line via Facetime, Skype or Zoom are perfect to make you feel less alone through this. It is also a good distraction for kids missing their friends!
Remember that we are all experiencing the same crisis, we will all see financial, personal and professional effects on different scales in our lives. Be kind, be understanding, be patient. We are and will remain available for you all! We will get through this!
Yves & Annie