call Congress for COVID-19 relief on new Musicians’ Union’s Day of Action
The newly formed Union of Musicians and Allied Workers (UMAW) have announced a Day of Action today "to demand that Congress acts on COVID relief measures" for musicians and music workers as outlined in their open letter published last week. Specifically, the UMAW is calling on music workers to make calls to Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Senator Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, and leaders of the Congressional Arts Caucus. They've set up a special hotline -- (813) 213-3989 -- to easily connect callers to the target offices. Fun fact: if you call to help out, the prerecorded prompts are voiced by Sadie Dupuis of Speedy Ortiz who has also shared a video about today's call to action which you can watch below.
"It’s hard to say when we will be earning a livable income again because music venues may be the last businesses to reopen, if they survive,” said UMAW co-organizer Josephine Shetty, who performs as Kohinoorgasm. “Our instability is exacerbated by that uncertainty along with the continual inadequacy of each relief package. The lag in benefits for some and lack of benefits for others is a matter of survival. We are in immediate need of a relief package that adequately addresses our demands."
Over 700 people have signed the UMAW's open letter, including artists Guy Picciotto (Fugazi), Lee Ranaldo, Tanya Donelly, Mary Lattimore, Geoff Rickly, Downtown Boys, Algiers, of Montreal, Frankie Cosmos, Sammus, Alice Bag, Dan Boeckner, Julia Holter, Nat Baldwin, Mutual Benefit, Mega Bog, Gouge Away, A Hawk and A Hacksaw, DIIV, La Dispute, Half Waif, Katie Alice Greer, Diet Cig, Hether Fortune, Zola Jesus, War on Women, Moor Mother, Charly Bliss, Baths, WHY?, Torres, Tomberlin, Guerilla Toss, Girlpool and many more.