US Live Event Industry Offers Collective COVID-19 Vaccination Infrastructure and Staff in Letter to President Biden

(The White House, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons)

AEG, Bandit Lites, Broadway League, IATSE, IAVM, Live Nation, NAMM, NITO, NIVA, OVG, and We Make Events Partner in Support of Public Health

Jan 26, 2020 – In a letter to President Biden today, AEG, Bandit Lites, Broadway League, International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE), International Association of Venue Managers (IAVM), Live Nation, the National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM), the National Independent Talent Organization (NITO), the National Independent Venue Association (NIVA), Oak View Group (OVG), and We Make Events formally offered their venues, staff, and expertise to the COVID-19 vaccination effort. The live event industry is in a unique position to help – the pandemic has fully shuttered operations, leaving venues empty and the furloughed crowd-management oriented staff who operate them eager to help out and get back to work.

“Since the pandemic shuttered our industry almost a year ago, our buildings and our co-workers have been paused, unutilized, and struggling” said Dayna Frank, owner & CEO, First Avenue Productions and Board President of NIVA. “These vaccines are our best chance at putting COVID-19 behind us, and our experiences organizing events and managing crowds now put us in the unique position of being the best prepared and most qualified industry to support the vaccination effort and get this country on the road to recovery.”

“It’s human nature to come together in good times and bad, and our industry is committed to doing everything in our power to bring people together again - not just for events, but for every aspect of community that we have been missing,” said Michael Rapino, president and CEO of Live Nation Entertainment. “Live Nation has venues across the country that are capable of managing critical onsite elements of the vaccine rollout and we are eager to pitch in and be part of the solution.”

Today’s letter to President Biden says, in part:

“As you set about achieving the ambitious goal of vaccinating 100 million Americans in 100 days, we wish to offer the full support and resources of the live event industry. We share your vision of expedient, equitable, and widespread vaccine distribution. It is our duty, as businesses rooted in communities across the nation, to do our part to set America on a positive path during this time of crisis.  We stand ready to work with Federal and State governments to save lives and get America back to work and school.”

Venues are specifically designed for queuing and crowd control, and are located in most urban, suburban, and rural communities - often near transit lines or with easy access to parking. The interiors are wide and clear, with bright work lights and empty standard refrigeration systems. Additionally, the inherent use of ticketing systems for advanced notification, timed entry, and crowd management in live events lends itself directly to managing this type of process.

“The entire live event industry has stood still since March, 2020,” says Bandit Lites Chair Michael T. Strickland. “We all stand united now, ready to assist in the safe, rapid delivery of the vaccine from a people moving perspective.”

“We are here to help. In fact, many venues are already working on the State and Local level to implement vaccine programs.” said  Wayne Forte, NITO executive committee member and president of Entourage Talent Associates. “Our industry owns, leases and/or has access to thousands of venues throughout America, most that are under mandated closures and sitting empty.  Event venues make ideal community vaccination sites.”

View the COV-AID 2021 Vaccination Delivery plan from the Live Event Industry.

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