Canada's Live Music Industry Offers to Help with the COVID-19 Vaccine Rollout

In an open letter released today by the Canadian Live Music Association (CLMA), its members across the country's live music industry are offering their spaces and expertise to assist the federal and provincial governments in their COVID-19 vaccine rollout.

The letter is address to: Dr. Joanne Langley, Task Force co-chair; J. Mark Lievonen, Task Force co-chair; Hon. Patty Hajdu, Minister of Health; Stephen Lucas, Deputy Minister; and Travis Gordon, Ministerial Assistant – Policy.

In the open letter, the CLMA notes that its members have buildings and spaces, as well as skills and expertise needed to manage and control large crowds in a highly-coordinated, effective way.

The letter, which is signed by CLMA President and CEO Erin Benjamin, reads:

Dear Dr. Langley, Mr. Lievonen, Minister Hajdu, Mr. Lucas and Mr. Gordon;

On behalf of the Canadian Live Music Association (CLMA), thank you for all of your hard work over the past many months. We represent Canada’s concert industry – including venues and facilities of all sizes, in towns and cities across the country. Live events are what we do.

I’m reaching out to offer our help. We know our many venue owners and managers, and our suppliers, would eagerly want to support the efforts of the many Vaccine Distribution Task Forces across Canada. As you make your preparations and look for efficiencies, please let us know if this is of interest. If so, we will – with haste – put together a catalogue of assets and begin outreach based on need. We have the buildings and spaces as well as the skills and expertise needed to manage and control large crowds in a highly-coordinated, effective way. It is our duty as Canadians to lend a hand, and we want to help.

Our community has been largely shuttered for almost a year. We remain among the hardest hit of sectors, with no revenue since early March 2020. We’ve spent the last eleven months readying for reopening, for when the time comes. Now we have rigorous, tactical COVID-prevention plans in place, adapted by customizing the very best practices shared through leadership, data and science from around the world - and here at home. And our protocols evolve daily in order to accommodate all current or changing information. We consider ourselves not only ready, but best-equipped to partner with you to get the job done.

We are anxious to do whatever we can to support government in reaching vaccination goals, and as Canadians doing our part to help end the crisis. We either own, or have access to, the infrastructure required to build-out and manage vaccination sites. And we have the people to staff, lead and support operations at every level.

Protecting public health has been our shared primary concern. We would be so pleased to be able to assist you, and we offer our expertise to ensure the Canadian vaccination program can be the success it needs to be.

We can be ready to meet with you at any time to further discuss how we can help.

Erin Benjamin
President & CEO

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Michael Raine is the Editor-in-Chief at Canadian Musician and Canadian Music Trade magazines. He also hosts the Canadian Musician Podcast.
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