- 30 Sep 20
Musicians, entertainers and others in the music industry could lose their homes because of the failure of Government to guarantee an extension of Mortgage Payment Breaks from banks.
A decision made Monday by the Government has compounded an already untenable situation for arts industry professionals.
"We are deeply disappointed and angry at the Government’s failure to ensure Payment Breaks for our industry from the banks”, a spokesman said.
He added: “Payment breaks have been one of the top priorities for the Association in order to offer members more protection over the winter. Musicians and entertainers have had their livelihoods closed down since March the 12th and with no roadmap or reopening date in sight, the Payment Breaks were safeguarding many people’s homes.”
The latest blow to the music industry was announced after a meeting between the Tánaiste Leo Varadkar, the Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe, the Minister for Public Expenditure Michael McGrath and the chief executives of the country's retail banks.
Fine Gael/Fianna Fail and Green Party Government guidelines have taken away musicians’ and entertainers’ ability to earn a living, with no compensation or any form of redress to ensure the security of their homes and families or indeed their futures.
“Failure to support the human infrastructure is signing the death warrant of 35,000 workers in the industry,” said the spokesman.
Last week, statistics according to the Music & Entertainment Association of Ireland (MEAI) made headlines when it was revealed that almost 70% of members depend on the music and entertainment sector for their income. MEAI's 4,700-plus countrywide membership is suffering badly, because of the current restrictions and ultimate ban on live music and other entertainment events.
According to MEAI, 11.5% of its members are in arrears with utility providers. One in ten of members must now sell essential equipment to cover household expenses and 17.4% are dealing with mental health worries as a result of financial stress.