Thursday, 19 November 2020
Covid-19 Pandemic Supports
I am very aware there are those in the sector who cannot apply for the CRSS. We met with the Music and Entertainment Association of Ireland, MEAI, last week and we have met with representatives from EPIC. We have asked them to consider what changes could be made to the €5 million pilot scheme. That is not just a scheme, we have seen it up and running. Last weekend saw the first events from that €5 million and there will be many more over the coming weeks and covering the Christmas period. These include pantomimes, live performances and musicians performing all across the State. I watched David Kitt play Mike the Pies on Tuesday and there are upcoming performances, including by Lisa Hannigan, Lantern events and the 4 of Us at the Spirit Store. There is a list of instances where we can see this money actually being used and providing a much-needed platform for performers. I am continuing the consultation with the sector to give careful consideration to how we can improve that €50 million on foot of the €5 million to help it, especially those who cannot access the CRSS.
On the UBI, I launched that report this week, only 48 hours ago. I am going to move with the oversight committee as a matter of priority. I cannot provide a timeline immediately. I want to do this properly. We have one shot at this and I want to do it the right way. I am hoping the €50 million will provide the lifeline, as will the other supports I have given throughout the year.