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'Unfair': Salon owner believes extended closures could shut down his business

CALGARY (CityNews) – A salon owner in Calgary said the extension of current restrictions is a blow the business can’t handle and it has him considering desperate measures.

Adam Spence is a brand manager for salons across western Canada and part owner at True You Salon in Calgary. He said Alberta’s health measures in the fight against COVID-19 have been unfair, even ruthless for this struggling industry.

“The tears the sadness, the anger that I’ve listened to from other salon owners has been heavy. Why the double standards, why are the rules applied to us and not others.”

Salons have been ordered to stay closed for another two weeks, due to high case numbers and a feared surge from holiday gatherings. But Adam said if his salon, and others can’t open, they may need to shut off their lights for good.

“If we are shut down again, everything should be shut down.”

RELATED: ‘A tough pill to swallow’: Local businesses react to new COVID-19 measures

True You Salon and Spa opened just two months before the latest round of measures was announced.

“There is no funding, being the newest business, we missed it by weeks,” said Spence.

Spence has spoken publicly to other news outlets about opening their doors on Monday regardless of public health orders to extend their closure, though he did not want to speak on that due to the backlash they’ve received online.

Opening against the province’s guidelines could result in a fine of $1,000 or more.

“It’s disheartening that we are going to be under a watchful eye tomorrow (Monday) as an industry. It’s disheartening that big box corporations will not,” said Spence.

Adding insult to injury for Spence, seeing the major crowds at malls making headlines over Christmas break.

“Hundreds of people in a mall and (they) say that’s safe and you can’t come into an establishment with a stylist in a salon as small as a suite in a business like True You where we would have a maximum of 12 people.”

Spence’s story is not unique as CityNews has spoken to dozens of businesses during the pandemic, in a similar situation, desperate to keep a business alive.

“COVID is a real thing, it’s a sad thing, but so is losing your business.”