30 April 2020
The union, through its Benevolent Fund, is providing financial support to members who are facing unforeseen and unavoidable hardship as a result of the Covid-19 crisis. The sudden closure of productions, performances and projects instantly reduced their income to zero and many are truly struggling to be able to buy essentials and pay bills. We are currently making financial grants to around 250 people every week.
Donations to the union’s Benevolent Fund to support this crucial work have been coming in, mainly from people within the industry, and we are very grateful to everyone who contributes. But we are reaching out now to audiences as well, to ask the public for their help. By working with Lights Up we will be asking for donations via Text messages so that people who are able to donate and who appreciate the entertainment Equity members provide, will be able to do so very easily and very quickly.
Lights Up is a charity that grants local theatre tickets to community groups, improving audience access and diversity. As this work has been hampered by the pandemic they are looking to help performers and venues in other ways until they are able to distribute tickets into the community again. We are delighted to be able to work with Lights Up on this public facing campaign to help directly support performers and creative practitioners until they are able to start working and earning again.
We are asking our members to share the links with their networks and put the information out to their social media followers and communities and we send our thanks to everyone who donates.