I've just got back from San Diego Comic-Con this very hour, and spend time at the airport spitting into tubes in case I came home bringing the Omicron coronavirus variant with. Not that likely, even though the first confirmed case was in California. And as the second Omicron case in the US has just been identified – and they went to a different comic con on a different coast, Anime NYC. at the Javits Center in Manhattan, New York – also home to New York Comic Con.
And while I await the results of the test, upgraded to identify the Omicron variant (and am isolating at home until they come in), the results are in on one Minnesota resident, just back from two days at Anime NYC. The man lives in Hennepin County had been vaccinated, and attended the Anime NYC 2021 convention at the Javits Center from the 19th to the 21st of November, developed mild symptoms on the 22nd of November and was tested for COVID two days later. He is no longer showing symptoms. Contact tracing will be carried out and authorities have a list of all those who attended Anime-Con. New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio will be holding press briefing today, regarding developments.Anime NYC's covid policy is as follows:
COVID-19 VACCINE REQUIRED
All attendees, exhibitors, guests, staff, crew, and all others 12-years-old or older entering the Javits Center for Anime NYC must show proof of vaccination. This is per the City of New York's Key to NYC initiative in place across all restaurants, museums, theaters, and all other indoor venues throughout New York City. Your proof of vaccination must show that you have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine authorized by the FDA or WHO. You can attend immediately after your first dose.
- FACE COVERINGS
All attendees, exhibitors, guests, staff, crew, and all others 2-years-old or older entering the Javits Center must wear masks while at Anime NYC, and please see the City of New York's recommendations for preferred face coverings. All face coverings must properly cover your nose and mouth. A mesh mask is not an acceptable face covering. A face shield is not an acceptable substitute for a mask. Face coverings can be removed when eating or drinking and by panelists while socially distanced on stage, but face coverings must be worn at all other times at Anime NYC – including when taking part in any cosplay or celebrity photographs.
COSPLAY MASKS, HELMETS, AND FACE COVERINGS
Cosplay masks and helmets are permitted but approved face coverings MUST be worn under the cosplay. Upon entry to the building, you will be required to remove your cosplay mask for security and show your approved face covering. Staff will be checking this throughout Anime NYC, so please be sure to keep your approved face covering on even if in cosplay.
FURTHER HEALTH AND SAFETY MEASURES
- Installation of specialized, hospital-grade air filters to improve air quality and reduce any air contaminants in the Javits Center. More space. Anime NYC is renting an additional 161,000 sq ft of space for the first time to further provide distancing between features and attendees. Widened aisles. Anime NYC typically features 10 feet aisles in the expo hall. This year, aisles are widened to an average of 15 feet to allow for more space between features and attendees. Increase sanitization. Increased sanitization teams from the Javits Center throughout the weekend cleaning the building. Increased hand sanitizers and signage. Heavy distribution of hand sanitizers throughout the building and messaging around proper hygiene. The Javits Center has achieved Global Biorisk Advisory Council (GBAC) STAR accreditation, the gold standard for facilities implementing strict infectious disease protocols in today's environment. To achieve the GBAC STAR, Javits has demonstrated achievements in 20 core elements, from standard operating procedures to personal protective equipment. Learn more at gbac.issa.com.0
MEDICAL OR RELIGIOUS EXEMPTIONS
Should our vaccination and mask policy not be a match for you this year, we encourage you to enjoy Anime NYC online at home through Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, where we'll be posting more than ever, and we welcome you to engage as part of the Anime NYC community digitally. We unfortunately cannot allow anyone into the Javits Center without vaccinations or face coverings. Anime NYC is a large gathering, and vaccinations and face coverings are required for the health and safety of all participants. We thank you for your support and apologize that this year's Anime NYC may not be a match for all our fans. If you seek to rollover or refund your tickets to Anime NYC, we are able to until our ticket mailing deadline on October 10, and we hope we can welcome you back next year.
ROLLOVERS AND REFUNDS
If you seek to rollover or refund your tickets to Anime NYC, email email@example.com. Requests must be made by October 10, 2021. Requests cannot be made after ticket mailing begins.
We ask that all attendees self-evaluate prior to coming to Anime NYC in order to protect others at the event. If you are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms or have been in close contact with someone who has had COVID-19 in the 14 days prior to the event, please do not enter the Javits Center. Instead, please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org.
CDC Director, Dr. Rochelle Walensky stated, regarding the appearance of the Omicron variant in the USA, "CDC has been actively monitoring and preparing for this variant. We have been working closely with Minnesota's Department of Health and will continue to work diligently with other U.S. and global public health and industry partners as we learn more. CDC has expanded its capacity for genomic sequencing over the past nine months and we have more tools to fight the variant than we had at this time last year from vaccines to boosters to the prevention strategies that we know work including masking in indoor public settings, washing your hands frequently and physical distancing. These methods work to prevent the spread of COVID-19, no matter the genetic sequence."