The fear communication that has been created in recent weeks around "organized public life" has already caused unrest among visitors and organizers. The numbers were already bad due to the continuous flow of messages in recent days, now they are disastrous.
By adding the mouth mask obligation to the CST, our event sector is 'de facto' closed. This decision is a sledgehammer blow for our sector. Clients don't like this and visitors probably even less, our sector is being muzzled with a mouth mask. The social experience is completely gone.
Rapid on-site testing as an alternative to the mouth mask is nice on paper. In reality, according to EC, this is a heavy operational and financial burden and often an impossible task, especially for large numbers.
Cold chilly and long winter
It is necessary to reactivate the support measures (bridging - temporary unemployment - globalization premium - voucher scheme - ...) The sector has been able to work for only 2 months since March 2020, and then with the rigorous application of the CST. Being allowed to work only 10 weeks in a year is economically unviable for any company or sector.
The event sector can no longer be fooled. Previously imposed measures were always extended in the past. Also due to a lead time of 3 months for events, this will be a cold, chilly and long winter for our entrepreneurs - employees - artists - freelancers - ... . We will not get through winter 2022 without financial support.
A turbo on the booster shot!
There is an urgent need to work on structural solutions that make a sustainable economic recovery possible. The on & off policy, open & closed, is untenable. The event sector also contains people of flesh and blood. We cannot be chained permanently without perspective. The flashing light economy as we know it today is not sustainable. Is the 2G track or the accelerated roll-out of the booster shot a solution? Why is it so painfully slow when that is the solution? Or make a plan to increase hospital capacity?
Better to organize well than to ban badly
The only minimal positive thing about this whole story is that the measures are uniform. It has the advantage of clarity. Unless sheriffs rise again at the provincial or local level and feel the irrepressible urge to manifest themselves and cancel events. In a country like Belgium, uniform regulations must apply within this pandemic.
Bruno Schaubroeck: 'The elimination of many local events genre Christmas markets ensures greater mobility and extra concentration on other occasions. It is a utopia to think that the population will not seek relaxation. We are convinced that it is better to involve us as partners in the policy to organize safely than to prohibit badly.
The obligation of teleworking will only reinforce that. We believe that the efforts people make by teleworking during the week, for example, should be rewarded with the opportunity to relax. People need an outlet from culture and events. And we have proven that this can be done safely with a CST without a mouth mask requirement. The Event Confederation is convinced that it is better to organize well than to ban badly.'