Today at Belfast’s Custom House Square, over 500 members of the live events community gathered in a socially distanced, COVID-compliant display. Another 100 squares were marked out for those unable to join.
The event organised by We Make Events NI saw professions ranging from riggers to sound engineers, tour managers to truck drivers, and many more in-between wore masks and had pre-registered for track and trace as per current Government guidelines during this perfectly-executed event delivery.
Clearly an emotional affair, the Northern Irish workers stood in defiance of the Government’s latest financial move, which leaves the live event industry’s skilled workers here facing a bleak future.
“The UK Government has offered a 33% wage top-up in order to help navigate the next few months. Our industry has not worked since mid-March, so 33% of nothing, is nothing,” says Events Producer Dino Cafolla.
“We’re showing MPs that not only are we the most qualified industry to keep people safe at events but telling them that we’d like to work together on a roadmap which allows our workforce to return. A blanket ban on all events has, in certain circumstances, resulting in illegal, unsafe gatherings by the general public. This only further hinders our industry's financial recovery.”