Ahead of the #WeMakeEvents/Red Alert protest in Parliament Square, the UK Council of Music Makers called on Government to urgently implement a sector-specific funding package to support music industry workers.

Comprising Featured Artists Coalition, The Ivors Academy, Music Managers Forum, Music Producers Guild and Musician’s Union, the CMM has written an open letter to government in which it says that without sector-specific support now the UK’s £5.2bn music industry could be irreparably damaged.

It reads: “As the united voice of music creators and performers, CMM writes to you in consideration of preserving the workforce, the highly-skilled foundation of the music industry. While we welcome the provisions in the chancellor’s Winter Economy Plan – VAT reduction, Bounceback Loan payback extension, extension to SEISS and the Job Support Scheme – these measures do not go far enough for our industry.

“Events, arts and culture industries have three times more the national average of workers on furlough and the music industry has freelance workforce of 72%, a portion of some 190,000 jobs, many of whom continue not to qualify for support under such schemes. The implication that the occupations of many in this world-beating music business are not ‘viable’ does not marry with its large-scale contribution to the economy.”

“In addition to other restrictions, as we look to another business quarter with no live music, and nowhere in sight for it to return in full, we urgently need support to avoid the decay of our industry, the hardship experienced by our workforce and the mass exodus of highly-skilled individuals, which will result in irreparable damage to lives, businesses and the world-class standing of the UK music industry.”

A recent Musicians’ Union survey of 2,000 of their members found 34% musicians may quit the industry due to Covid-19, 47% have been forced to look for work outside of music and 70% are unable to do more than a quarter of their usual work.