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International Internet Magazine. Baltic States news & analytics Wednesday, 23.09.2020, 15:25

Over 200 event technical services providers stage picket outside Latvian Culture Ministry

BC, Riga, 11.08.2020.Print version
Over 200 people representing event technical service companies gathered by the Culture Ministry building today to protest over the government's failure to support the industry during the Covid-19 crisis, LETA observed.

Normunds Eilands, head of the Latvian association of event technical service providers, told LETA that the picket was intended to draw the attention of the government and the wider public to the fact that events are created not just by artists but also technical staff. "Since the technical service companies do their job in the shadow, this is the time for us to send a message about our existence, because we are not sure that we will survive," Eilands said. 

The head of the association indicated that during the Covid-19 emergency, the industry's turnover plummeted nearly 100 percent, but that small improvements have been reported in the wake of the emergency, with the industry's turnover now being 65-80 percent below last year's figure.

Eilands said that many event technical service companies claimed downtime benefits for their employees during the crisis. However, now that the benefits have expired, the companies have lost 20 to 80 percent of their staff. 

Culture Minister Nauris Puntulis invited representatives of event technical service companies to sit down for negotiations to solve the industry's problems in dialogue withe the ministry. Eilands said he expected the talks to take place within the next couple of weeks. "We are ready to talk, but we are not sure how ready they are to talk with us," he said, adding that so far no solutions have been found to the situation. 

The culture minister invited event technical service providers for the talks on Wednesday, August 12.

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