COVID-19: Spotlight's call to the government for a rescue package for our members
We believe strongly that the government needs to support actors and those who have been financially impacted by this crisis. That’s why we’ve written to the Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, urging him to announce financial support measures that provide for the unique employment situation of actors and other freelancers in the creative industries. We encourage you to do the same. View our letter here.
Here is some sample wording that you can tailor to your own situation.
I am writing as one of the 70,000 actors who are members of Spotlight.
Film, television and theatre productions are all essential to entertain, engage and educate society, especially in these difficult times, when so many people are isolated from the rest of their communities. The role of the acting profession can help bring comfort through the art of storytelling into everyone’s homes. We now need essential financial support from the government, to ensure we can continue in our work.
Many of us have been affected by the closure of theatres and a pause of productions as a direct result of this COVID-19 crisis. Even more of us may also miss out on opportunities that have now been postponed or cancelled as a direct result of this pandemic. In addition, many actors supplement their income by working in other industries that have also been affected by this crisis, such as hospitality. Depending on how long the restrictions are in place to manage the spread of COVID-19, it may cause real financial hardship for many actors, and our families are incredibly distressed as a result.
We strongly call on you and your government to provide assurance by announcing measures to provide financial assistance to us and our unique employment situation. We urge you to revise universal credit in order to meet the needs of creative workers by scrapping the minimum income floor, reviewing how the government looks at the gainful self-employment test, and making universal credit advances a grant rather than a loan.
We look forward to your continued support of our industry at this extremely challenging time.