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Lifeguard shortages prompt schedule changes at Eastlink Centre pool

A shortage of lifeguards has caused the city to make changes to the hours of operation at the pool and aquatics area at the Eastlink Centre. Starting this weekend, public drop-in swimming will not be available on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m., and Saturdays and Sundays from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Mayor Jackie Clayton says guest safety remains the top priority and that required aquatics ratios are maintained.

“It also allows us to continue supporting various options for active lifestyles through important aquatics recreation programs and services including swimming lessons, certification courses, bookings, and classes.”

The aquatics area will also close at 6 p.m. on the last Sunday of each month beginning March 26th, so the staff can complete safety training.

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Community Knowledge Campus General Manager Angela Redding says lifeguard recruitment challenges are being experienced across Canada and that includes Grande Prairie.

“We have taken various measures to combat labor shortages, including recruitment of 10 new aquatics staff since March 1, offering lifeguard certification courses and the Aquatics New Hire Incentive program.”

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