Hospitality NL Disappointed with Images of Overcrowding at NL Bars

Hospitality NL Disappointed with Images of Overcrowding at NL Bars; Stressing that Tourism/Hospitality Sector is Committed to Public Safety

For Immediate Release                                                                   July 9, 2020

St. John’s – Recent images of a crowded establishment in St. John’s have been circulating on social and traditional media, accompanied by messages of outrage at a disregard for social distancing and public health considerations. 

In response to this issue, Hospitality Newfoundland and Labrador has been diligent in gathering information and meeting with members of the George Street Association to determine next steps. The George Street Association is not a member of Hospitality NL but has engaged the industry association in an effort to protect the integrity of the tourism sector.

“At Hospitality NL we fully understand the concerns that these images have created, for both the public and other tourism/hospitality operators in our province,” said Steve Denty, Board Chair for Hospitality NL. “Our Association was extremely disappointed to learn of this incident and have been working with key stakeholders and other officials to examine the issue and define a path that sees the City’s downtown tourism sector successfully move forward.”

The Tourism and hospitality industry has been faced with countless issues and challenges since the arrival of COVID-19. While there have been significant milestones reached in the province’s ability to relax certain public health restrictions, the industry still faces many hurdles as it navigates the changing landscape of the tourism sector. 

“Tourism and hospitality operators in NL are working incredibly hard to survive this unprecedented time, while adhering to evolving public health protocols and meeting the needs of a local and somewhat apprehensive public,” said Denty. “We want to shine a spotlight on the majority of our members: the operators who are making the effort and doing things right!”

Hospitality NL is encouraging the public to continue supporting its local tourism and hospitality sector and have received assurances from the George Street Association that they are working with the relevant authorities to rectify these shortcomings quickly and responsibly.   

“Protocols are in place and the industry is listening,” says Denty. “Furthermore, Hospitality NL has been regularly advocating for positive change and effective regulations that support our members; most recently writing to the provincial government to request strengthening border screening, enforcement of regulations and creation of additional education programs. We are pleased to say that we have been met with positive responses and we are hopeful that they continue to move in the right direction.”

For more information on Hospitality NL and the work taking place to strengthen the tourism and hospitality sector in NL, please visit


Media Contact:
Craig Foley, Chief Executive Officer
Tel: (709) 722-2000, ext. 232