Coronavirus Advice

Please see below for our current advice regarding coronavirus. This will be updated regularly so please check back and follow our social media channels.

Available support
A quick guide to the support available to you

Financial advice
Financial support Understand your rights to the different kinds of financial support available during the Coronavirus outbreak and how to claim.

Industry specific guides
Theatre and Live Performance
Recorded Media (Film, TV audio etc)
Variety, Circus and Entertainment

Student guides
Equity Statement on COVID-19 for Student Members

General advice
The government is issuing the following advice on Coronavirus, which is being regularly updated:
https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus

Help control the virus

To protect yourself and others, when you leave home you must:

  • wash hands - keep washing your hands regularly
  • cover face - wear a face covering over your nose and mouth in enclosed spaces
  • make space - stay at least a metre away from people not in your household

If you are feeling unwell, get a test and do not leave home for at least 10 days.


1. Wash your hands often with soap and hot water, or use alcohol sanitiser if handwashing facilities are not available.
2. Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw it in a bin. Catch it, Bin it, Kill it. Failing that, sneeze into your elbow and avoid coughing on or near others.
3. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
4. If you have either a new continuous cough or high temperature, check the NHS website https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/
5. If you are worried about your symptoms, do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital. Use the 111 online coronavirus service to find out what to do https://111.nhs.uk/covid-19/ Only call 111 if you cannot get help online.

ACAS also advises on coronavirus and the workplace:
https://www.acas.org.uk/coronavirus

For Equity members both sets of advice should assist if you are concerned what to do if you think you may have been in contact with the virus, or how your engager should respond in those circumstances.

Work advice
Where you are concerned about an engagement being cancelled or a contract being terminated due to coronavirus issues, please contact the relevant Equity Organiser for specific advice about your situation. Organisers’ details can be found in the Equity diary, in the back of the Equity magazine or on our website.

If you are unclear who the most relevant Organiser is to your area of work please contact:
Sam Winter, swinter@equity.org.uk in the General Secretary’s department. He will direct you to the relevant Organiser.

Contract issues
A matter that may arise in relation to cancelled engagements or contracts is the concept of ‘force majeure’. This will usually be a clause in the contract that outlines circumstances under which the contract may be said to have been cancelled because of events or circumstances outside the engagers control. Another concept is ‘frustration of contract’ where the contract may be said to have been discontinued because of unforeseen circumstances.

The issues around these, and other contract matters, are never simple and often subject to interpretation, so your Equity Organiser is the first port of call for any query. Organisers can obtain further detailed legal advice on your behalf where necessary.

Mental well-being
At this worrying time many of us are experiencing stress or anxiety so we have brought together some resources that may help. https://www.artsminds.co.uk/worrying/covid19-coronavirus/