“You are the ESA.”
From the earliest days of the organization, these four words have guided the actions of the Event Safety Alliance (ESA). Whether it’s the development of guidelines, training opportunities, or advocacy, ESA is committed to ensuring the outcomes are relevant and accessible to everyone within the live event industry. In this spirit, the Event Safety Alliance has launched the Event Safety For All initiative, a broad series of changes to core programs designed to make active participation in the Event Safety Alliance accessible to everyone.
“The strength of the Event Safety Alliance has always been in our supporters,” says ESA founder and chairman Jim Digby. “Shifting the paradigm of safety over the long term is a Herculean task that requires the involvement of everyone within the industry. In launching the Event Safety For All initiative, we hope to remove many barriers to participation in ESA programs, particularly for freelancers and those just starting out in their careers.”
Changes have been made to four key ESA programs/deliverables: membership; the Event Safety Summit; The Event Safety Guide; and Event Safety Access Training.
To encourage individuals to join the Event Safety Alliance, membership dues to the organization have been substantially reduced. Membership to the ESA now costs $75 annually, down from $180. Current benefits to membership will remain unchanged.
“The strongest benefit of membership in the Event Safety Alliance is eligibility for event discounts,” says Digby. “Our desire has long been to maintain a membership program that provides real value and ‘pays for itself’ quickly. By lowering the annual dues, we hope to encourage more folks to consider becoming an active member and make it easier for them to realize the benefits.”
This change applies to both new and existing members. Current members in good standing will have their renewal date extended to compensate for this reduction.
Event Safety Summit
Changes have also been made to the pricing structure for the 2016 Event Safety Summit. From now until November 18, registration for the live event industry’s first safety-specific conference will cost $1,250 for members and $1,500 for non-members (down from $1,750).
“As with the changes to membership, the motivation for lowering the price of the Event Safety Summit is to make attendance feasible for as many people as possible,” explains Digby. “Thanks to the tremendous support of Rock Lititz, we’re able to accommodate a greater number of attendees than in years past, so it only makes sense to take advantage of the opportunity.”
This year’s Event Safety Summit will introduce attendees to a new slate of subject matter experts and welcome a few previous presenters back to build on concepts shared during past events. Special attention has been placed on creating a balanced, inclusive program that is relevant to everyone working in live events, regardless of their industry segment or discipline. Current topics run the gamut from safety program development, to structural engineering, to emergency communications, to violence prevention and the after effects of the attacks in Paris and Orlando.
Additional information and registration details for the Event Safety Summit can be found at eventsafetysummit.com.
Event Safety Guide
The Event Safety For All initiative also includes several changes involving the Event Safety Guide. First, the purchase price of the current version of the Guide has been reduced. Hard copies of the Guide will now retail for $24.95 on the ESA website (down from $49.95), while ebook versions will list for $4.99 on Amazon, iTunes, and other online ebook providers. Additionally, the ESA will be releasing an official French translation of the Event Safety Guide. Ebook versions for this translation will also retail for $4.99 at most online providers.
“We want to ensure that the Event Safety Guide is widely utilized,” says Digby. “Reducing the price of the Guide to the lowest permitted level will make it easier for folks to acquire a copy in a format and language that they are comfortable with.”
The most significant change doesn’t involve the current Guide but the next edition. In an exciting development, Event Safety Alliance will be collaborating with ESTA’s Technical Standard Program to establish a new Event Safety Working Group that will work to transition the current Event Safety Guide into one or more ANSI standards (American National Standards Institute).
The documents that result from this process will be widely accepted, national standards for many aspects of live event operations and planning, increasing the value of the information to the industry. Detailed information on this process and on applying to a Working Group can be found at the ESA’s website.
Event Safety Access Training
Event Safety Alliance has announced two additional classroom deliveries of the organization’s core safety training program, Event Safety Access. Sessions are currently scheduled to take place Thursday, October 20 during LDI in Las Vegas, as well as November 28 at Rock Lititz in Lititz, Pennsylvania. Additionally, ESA is currently developing a 24/7 online delivery option for Event Safety Access, expected to launch in the first quarter of 2017.
“Since we launched Event Safety Access this past January, interest in the program has been extraordinary,” says Digby. “There’s a strong desire within the industry for relevant and accessible training opportunities. By offering additional classroom deliveries of ESAT and developing an online training option, we hope to fulfill the needs of anyone who desires to ensure the safety of themselves and their co-workers.”
ESA members in good standing are eligible for discounted registration for both in-person and online Event Safety Access training. More information on Event Safety Access training and to register for an upcoming session, please visit eventsafetyaccess.com.
“The unwavering support of our members and sponsors has been crucial to the development of the Guide, ESAT, and Event Safety Summit,” says Digby. “We hope that these program changes will help to ensure that the results of this support are accessible to those who will benefit the most.”
Jacob Worek currently serves as director of operations for the Event Safety Alliance. He is the former operations manager for the First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre and Charter One Pavilion in Chicago, Illinois, with a diverse professional background that includes experiential/live event marketing, production management, and audio production. He holds dual bachelor’s degrees in Occupational Safety and Telecommunications, and written extensively about the issues surrounding safety and event management for media outlets such as The New York Times, Associated Press, Live Design, Mobile Production Monthly, WNYC Radio, PLSN, and BizBash Magazine. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.