Urban think tank Committee for Sydney is backing calls for a government-backed insurance scheme to cover events that have to be cancelled or run at reduced capacity because of State or Federal Government Covid-19 controls.
Matt Levinson, Director of Corporate Affairs at the Committee for Sydney:
“We first made the case for government to get behind the events sector as Sydney emerged from the Delta lockdown, the arrival of omicron is a powerful reminder the pandemic’s not yet over, and the need for this support is more urgent than ever.
“We applaud the NSW Government’s record of managing the pandemic responsibly, keeping people safe and keeping the economy in good shape.
“But event organisers have directly borne the brunt of Covid-19 controls, and face weakened consumer confidence and the risk of cancellation due to Covid-19 outbreaks, especially with the arrival of the omicron variant.
“They’re raring to put on the kind of events you’ll remember for the rest of your life, but after repeated lockdowns, cancellations and job losses, they need our support, and they need it now.
“We’re encouraging the NSW Government to add government-backed insurance for the events sector to their package of strong measures intended to drive economic recovery across our CBDs.
“Ideally, no events should be cancelled because of Covid cases. With high rates of vaccinations, we should be living with the virus, just as with any other endemic disease. But so long as strict contact tracing and isolation rules exist, events will be at risk of cancellation.
“Event organisers urgently need the confidence to keep going, and that means government backing for insurance they can’t get on the private market.”
The Committee’s policy paper, Six actions to get Sydney’s events sector back on track, is here: https://sydney.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2021/11/Committee-for-Sydney-Events-Reopening-Recovery-Statement-November-2021.pdf