The Interior Health Authority has taken extraordinary action to forcibly close a martial arts studio in Kelowna, BC, for violating public health orders.
On Tuesday, interior health officials – along with Kelowna city staff and the RCMP – replaced the locks at Flow Academy on 1151 Sutherland Avenue.
The Health Commission says it has taken aggressive measures to close the campus after owner Donia Aguirre ignored provincial health orders against indoor group trainings.
Flow Academy offers classes in Brazilian jiu-jitsu, kickboxing, yoga and meditation.
In February, Aguir received a ticket to intervene at health officials’ premises and was ordered by the health authority to stop conducting indoor group activities.
Dr. Albert DeVilliers, chief medical officer of the Department of Home Affairs, issued an order on April 20 to close the authority, but the studio ignored it and continued to operate.
De Villiers told the CBC’s Brady Strachan that “we still see people coming and going, and they are violating the assembly order and the closure order.”
“Unexpectedly, [we] At that time we had to change their locks as there was nothing else we could do. “
“This is the first time I’ve really had to go this far to change locks and spend a lot of time doing this,” DeVilleurs said. “It’s the first time we’ve done it, and hopefully [it’s] Last time. ”
CBC News approached Aguirre by email, but did not ask again.
Last month, Flow Academy announced on its website that it would not accept new membership applications from anyone who has taken a Govt-19 vaccine, misclassifying vaccines as dangerous and responsible.
Despite the announcement, De Villiers said he was upset by the misinformation about the spread of corona virus vaccines in the local community.
“It’s always been about us, because unfortunately … the public will really believe and act on it [misinformation] Similarly, they may put others at risk, ”he said.
Flow Academy, which has been operating without a business license since February, submitted an application for one, but was rejected by the city for non-compliance with provincial health regulations.
Lance Kefish, Kelowna’s risk manager, said the city had issued four violation tickets for a total of 000 4,000 to Flow Academy for unlicensed activity and failed to allow city inspections.
“It simply came to our notice then [the amount of tickets issued] Very unusual, “said Kefish.
Group indoor exercise activities at gyms, yoga studios and other locations are currently prohibited. The order is valid until May 25.