Dear Members –
Due to the ongoing COVID-19 strain on Manitoba ICU’s, Manitoba has not been able to relax restrictions at the level we can see happening in other Canadian provinces.
The news on vaccination rates is encouraging however, and offers some hope that we may start to perform again for live audiences as early as this Fall. It may be premature to expect an immediate return to pre-pandemic levels of employment for many musicians, since the financial hit to most arts organizations and some businesses has made many cautious about mounting large/any programs too soon.
Hang in there – and, perhaps, consider attending the MPM’s special Unison Benevolent Fund online information session at noon on June 23/21 to learn about financial and other support programs offered FREE to Music Industry workers and their families.
FEDERAL GOVERNMENT SUPPORT
Last month I outlined some of the proposed changes to Bill C-30, which is presently working its way through Parliament. After passing Second reading in late May, the bill was referred to the The Finance Committee which has reviewed it and, as of June 7, sent its report to Members of Parliament. At this stage additional amendments may be suggested before the Bill continues through the process. Until it is passed, extensions/changes to CRB, CEWS and adjustments to EI and OAS for people over age 75 are on hold. The House is scheduled to recess for the summer on June 23, so the timeline is getting tight for passage/defeat of this Bill.
Since little else has changed, that is as much information as I really have to pass on at this time.
PROVINCIAL GOVERNMENT SUPPORT
This page offers a complete listing of COVID-related support offered by the Manitoba Government.
In addition to keeping a close eye on the potential changes to Bill C-30 (visit this page for information on the CFM position on our behalf), Alan Willaert and the CFM head office staff have been lobbying hard regarding the implementation of Bill C-10. Intended to amend the Broadcasting Act, This Bill matters greatly to musicians in our fight to be fairly compensated for the creative content/property shared – with minimal payment – by digital platforms that are not considered Broadcasters (due to outdated Canadian terminology in the existing Act). Please read more on this topic here.
Local 190 Update
If you joined our Local since January 2020, you are invited and encouraged to join Kelly and I via ZOOM at noon on Wednesday, June 16th for a New Member Orientation. This one-hour session is intended to give you an overview of our union and some of the services and benefits to which members are entitled, along with a short session on completing contracts and a Q & A opportunity. Please contact the office at least 24 hours ahead to register and you will be sent the ZOOM link prior to the date.
A reminder that the MPM office will be CLOSED MONDAYS for the summer, until September 7/21. We continue to work remotely Tuesdays through Fridays, with in-person appointments required should you need to connect directly.
Please reach out if we can assist you!
Hope to see you online soon! Until then, take good care –
Janice Finlay, B. Mus., B. Sc.
Music Professionals of Manitoba