Extend CERB Payments For Full-Time Entertainers

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On June 11th, one day before bars and restaurants in most of the province of Ontario were permitted to re-open, it was announced by the city of Ottawa that live music was prohibited during active operations for an indefinite time. While many public artists (musicians, DJs, hosts, comedians, dancers, etc) perform on a part-time basis, there are still many public artists who work full-time all across Canada who are facing outright bans from earning a living from their primary source of income similar to Ottawa. To put it simply, Canadian full-time artists require an extension of CERB payments (or some other equivalent) beyond the original four months allotted to Canadians whose industries were halted by covid-19. As many areas in the country enter the second phase of re-opening the economy, live entertainers are still left behind, and we still don't know for how long.

We public artists are told how important our work is for sustaining culture in our society, and we are honoured to hold these duties for our fellow citizens. The importance of music and laughter is only underscored every day by these uncertain times. We public artists also understand how safety during this pandemic should be the number-one priority for all Canadians. We wish to be able to continue to work again, but only when it is safe to do so; not before. However, everyone needs to pay rent. Everyone needs to eat. Without a source of income, we public artists face having to leave our careers behind us, wiping away our future opportunities to continue to perpetuate culture in Canada. Please extend CERB payments for full-time entertainers in Canada until we are permitted to work again.