5th July 2020
Statement from Viva La PD, the voice of the UK’s freelance TV producers and directors, on the Government’s support package for the arts and cultural sector:
“This financial support will be warmly welcomed by the cultural and arts organisations that qualify, and we’re pleased for them. But it seems TV freelancers have, once again, been forgotten and won’t receive a penny.
“The Government’s announcement fails to recognise that the UK’s cultural industries, and particularly TV production, are hugely reliant on highly-skilled freelance workers. We make a massive contribution to our world-renowned television industry, and the economy as a whole. Yet freelancers like Pete*, whose story we told this week in a moving video, still don't qualify for support.
“The Chancellor has the chance on Wednesday to help freelancers — the engine room and ideas factory of the cultural sector — by closing the gaps in his income support schemes. It’s only fair that he does. We’ve struggled for over 100 days now with no income, while seeing our taxes support other workers. We shouldn’t be made to beg.”
* Pete is a pseudonym
Viva La PD Co-Administrator / Spokesperson
NOTES FOR EDITORS
Viva La PD is an independent peer-to-peer community group for Television Producer / Directors, with over 1250 members.
In April, Viva La PD published a report “Freelancers: Fighting For Survival” based on a survey of almost 1000 TV professionals, to produce an up-to-date assessment of Covid-19's impact on the freelance television workforce. It found that fewer than 1 in 5 freelancers were working during lockdown.
In June, Viva La PD published key findings from a follow-up survey of nearly 2000 freelance professionals in the TV industry “TV Freelancers: Six Lost Months”. The survey found over half of TV freelancers are ineligible to government support schemes, and face losing half a year of income.
James Taylor, Viva La PD Co-Administrator / spokesperson is available for contact.