Joint research by the Musicians’ Union and The Ivors Academy has revealed that 70% of musicians, songwriters and composers who are still shielding in the UK are facing financial hardship because of their continued need to shield.
Research from the Musicians’ Union and The Ivors Academy has found that 70% of musicians, songwriters and composers who are still shielding throughout the pandemic are facing financial hardship because of their continued need to shield. The research was conducted in collaboration with ConnectsMusic.com and with the support of Help Musicians and Attitude is Everything.
Almost 40% of the 340 respondents to the joint survey, drawn from all sectors of the industry and all career stages, will still have to shield beyond the lifting of Covid-19 restrictions and the end of the vaccine roll-out to protect their health, or the health of someone with whom they live.
Just under half of these are concerned that infection with Covid-19, regardless of the vaccine, may complicate other health conditions, and 15% will need to shield by proxy to protect someone they are living with.
The new research reveals that almost 70% of musicians and music creators with a continued need to shield have lost more than 50% of their usual income or work during the last 12 months and, of these, almost 50% have lost between 75-100% of their earnings.
Nearly 60% of musicians and music creators have received no financial support whilst shielding (60% of these because they did not meet the eligibility criteria) and over 60% anticipate they will lose 50-100% of their usual income or work opportunities over the next 12 months because of their continued need to shield.
The joint research also highlighted that almost 60% of shielding musicians are concerned that they will not be considered for work in the future because health and safety requirements may be more complex when engaging them.
General secretary of the MU Horace Trubridge said, ’The Musicians’ Union will work together with The Ivors Academy to provide support for wellbeing, opportunities for musicians and music creators to maintain their professional networks, and provide assistance to access funding opportunities and would encourage the rest of the music industry to support us in this work.’
He continues, ’These musicians and music creators are concerned about their futures and how they will be able to cope financially. Musicians and music creators with a continued need to shield are being left behind, many with no support. The Government must provide clearer, accessible guidance, and ensure that this group of workers can access financial support to stay safe and not be forced to choose between going to work and their health’
The Musicians’ Union and The Ivors Academy are calling on the UK Government to support vulnerable musicians by extending the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme and the Furlough Scheme for this group of workers and making them automatically eligible until they can safely return to work. The MU and Ivors Academy are also driving for guidance for employers on good ventilation, support and further consultation with this group of workers in decision making processes to ensure they are not excluded from the sector’s recovery.