Useful Resources During the COVID-19 Outbreak

Financial Support

 

The Federal Government has announced numerous stimulus packages in recent times, with more updates sure to come. There’s a lot of information out there and it’s tricky to navigate. We’ve created a summary of federal and state by state funding opportunites here GOVERNMENT COVID-19 FUNDING ROUND UP – but some more specific information is also provided below.

 

Centrelink’s Coronavirus Supplement

What is it? Is it for you? How do you get it?

ABC News have put together this detailed primer.

JobKeeper Package

UPDATE 11-5-2020

The Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry has published a seventh edition of their JobKeeper Payment Employer Guide. New information is marked up in red.

UPDATE: Business Monthly Declaration Opens 4 May 2020

Each month, employers applying for JobKeeper payments must confirm eligible employees and turnover.

The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) portal to submit the first business monthly declaration for JobKeeper payments opens on Monday 4 May 2020.

Employers will only need to identify eligible employees once. The list of employees will need to be maintained on a monthly basis and reported to the ATO.

To claim JobKeeper payments for April, employers will need to have paid employees $1,500 per fortnight by 8 May 2020.

The final date to enrol for JobKeeper fortnights in April and May is 31 May 2020.

Further information is available on the ATO website here.

Fact sheets on the JobKeeper package are now available and clarify the eligibility requirements in greater detail:

Supporting businesses to retain jobs (Fact Sheet)

For employers

For employees

NEW ON 7/4/2020 – JobKeeper FAQ Fact Sheet

PAC Australia had the opportunity to consult with Treasury at a roundtable meeting on March 31, 2020 and noted some complicating factors for our members (and the broader arts sector) in accessing this wage subsidy, notably:

 

  • Not all arts organisations may be able to indicate the required 30% drop in revenue in the past month, given the impact on staff retention is based on future work that has been cancelled, as much as current contracts.
  • The seasonality of casual engagement means staff may be working for multiple employers and could have difficulty establishing the required 12 months of continual employment.
  • There are a significant number of presenting organisations around the country who aren’t eligible due to their management structures tied to Local or State Government.

 

Get in touch with your state-based arts agencies and review their latest information:

Australian Capital Territory

New South Wales

Northern Territory

Queensland

South Australia

Tasmania

Victoria

Western Australia

 

NSW Local Government Employee Funding Support

You might have seen in our funding round up, that the NSW Local Government has announced up to $112.5m to support qualifying local government employees for up to three months under their Council Retention Allowance. Payments will be $1,500 per fortnight for qualifying employees.

1000 x 1000: Crisis Cash For Artists

PAC Australia is proud to be a Champion Company alongside many sector colleagues for TNA’s Crisis Cash for Artists campaign. More information and donations are being received here.

If you know of independent artists who are really struggling and might be eligible – please invite them to apply to the fund here.

ACT Government Support For Arts Organisations

On 11 May 2020, the ACT Government announced an additional $ 1 million investment to arts organisations hat had been severely impacted by COVID-19.

Eligible arts organisations (currently funded Key Arts and Program organisations) will be invited to submit proposals for support by demonstrating their financial need this calendar year.

The proposals will be due on 22 May 2020.

 

State-by-State Information

 

UPDATED 11-5-2020

On 8-5-2020 The Prime Minister outlined the details of a new roadmap to reopening Australia, presenting a three step plan (link to PDF download). These should be read only as the steps that will be taken – not as an indication or commitment to a timeline as these will be determined at a state level (more below).

Unfortunately, the steps do not include any timeframe or intent to permit gatherings of 100+ people, though there is an indication that “States and Territories may allow larger numbers in some circumstances”.

The National Cabinet will review the progress of the above plan every three weeks and more details provided as they become available.

Our thanks to LPA for their contributions to the below.

 

New South Wales

The New South Wales Public Health (COVID-19 Restrictions on Gathering and Movement) Order 2020 directs from 31 March 2020 – 29 June 2020 (unless revoked earlier) that a person must not participate in a gathering in a public place of more than two persons.

Update 10-5-2020

Gladys Berejiklian originally advised there would be no immediate changes, but has since released the following update. Monitor this page for current restrictions and updates.

Update 25-5-2020

From 1 June 2020:

  • Museums, galleries and libraries will reopen
  • Pubs, clubs, cafes and restaurants can serve up to 50 patrons

 

Victoria

The Victorian Government has extended its State of Emergency until midnight 11 May 2020.

Further details are in the signed Stay at Home and Restricted Activity Directions from the Deputy Chief Health Officer.

Update 11-5-2020

The Victorian Premier has announced a gradual easing of restrictions with a renewed State of Emergency in place until 11:59pm (AEST on 31 May 2020.

Full details on current restrictions and FAQs can be found here.

Update 25-5-2020

From 1 June 2020:

  • Galleries, museums, drive-in cinemas, outdoor amusement parks and historic sites will reopen, with a 20-patron limit
  • Libraries and other community spaces will reopen, with no more than 20 people in a single area
  • Gatherings of 20 people in a home will be permitted
  • Restaurants, pubs and cafes can serve up to 20 patrons
  • Overnight stays at private residences and tourist accommodations will be permitted.

From 22 June 2020:

  • Indoor cinemas can reopen.

 

Queensland

The Queensland Government announced a Public Health Emergency on 29 January 2020. Its duration has been extended by regulation to 19 May 2020.

The Public Health Direction: Non-essential business, activity and undertaking Closure Direction applies during this time.

Update 8-5-2020

QLD reopening roadmap timeline announced and published.

Update 25-5-2020

From 12 June 2020:

  • Concert venues, theatres, arenas, auditoria and stadiums will reopen, with a 20-patron limit
  • Indoor cinemas will reopen, with a 20-patron limit
  • Museums, art galleries and historic sites will reopen, with a 20-patron limit
  • Libraries will reopen, with a 20-patron limit
  • Restaurants, cafes, pubs, registered and licensed clubs, RSL clubs, hotels and casinos (no bars or gaming) will reopen, with a 20 patron limit
  • Gatherings of 20 people in a home will be permitted

 

Western Australia

The WA Government declared a State of Emergency effective 15 March 2020.

The Closure and Restriction (Limit the Spread) Directions apply until 6:00pm 7 May 2020, or when the State of Emergency declaration is revoked, whichever occurs first.

Update 10-5-2020

Mark McGowan announced WA’s plans on May 10, noting that some measures in Step One have already been implemented.

Update 25-5-2020

From 18 May 2020:

  • Cafes and restaurants with meal service, including within pubs, bars, clubs, hotels and casino, with a 20-patron limit, was permitted
  • Community facilities and libraries were reopened
  • Non-work gatherings of up to 20 people were permitted
  • Some regional travel was allowed.

Phase 3 of Western Australia’s four phase roadmap is currently being finalised. It may include further increases to non-work gathering limits and reopening galleries, museums, zoos, theatres, cinemas and concert venues.

 

South Australia

The South Australian Government announced a Public Health Emergency effective 15 March 2020.

The Non-Essential Business and Other Gatherings Direction applies from 25 March 2020.

Update 8-5-2020

SA reopening roadmap timeline announced and published.

Update 25-5-2020

From 1 June 2020:

  • Cinemas and theatres will reopen, with an 80-patron limit, provided they can contain them to groups of 20 in discreet rooms or areas within the business
  • Galleries and museums will reopen, with an 80-patron limit, provided they can contain them to groups of 20 in discreet rooms or areas within the business
  • Pubs, bars, restaurants and cafes will be permitted up to 80 patrons, provided they can contain them to groups of 20 in discreet rooms or areas within the business.

Businesses will be required to complete COVID-19 plans and produce them on request.

 

Tasmania

The Tasmanian Government announced a State of Emergency effective 19 March 2020.

Business restrictions and Gatherings measures apply during this time. These will be regularly reviewed based on advice from the Australian Health Protection Principal Committee.

Further restrictions have been introduced in the North West region of Tasmania from midnight on 12 April 2020 for a period of 14 days.

Update 8-5-2020

Peter Gutwein has announced restrictions will start to be eased from Monday May 11 2020. The full details are expected to be published here.

Update 25-5-2020

From 15 June 2020:

  • Indoor and outdoor gatherings of up to 20 people will be permitted, including at restaurants and cafes, cinemas, museums, galleries, theatres, performance venues and historic sites
  • Visitors to households will be reviewed
  • Staying in private accommodation will be allowed
  • Border controls will remain in place.

 

Australian Capital Territory

The ACT Government announced a Public Health Emergency effective 16 March 2020.

The Public Health (Closure of Non-Essential Business or Undertaking) Emergency Direction 2020 applies until 11:59pm 9 July 2020.

Update 11-5-2020

Changes to restrictions can be found in the link.

The ACT Government has also announced an additional $ 1 million investment to arts organisations hat had been severely impacted by COVID-19.

Update 25-5-2020

From 11.59pm (AEST) on 15 May 2020:

  • Cafes and restaurants (including pubs and clubs offering seated in-house dining) were allowed to seat up to 10 patrons at one time
  • Community centres and community facilities were reopened, with a maximum of 10 people
  • Libraries (from 18 May 2020) were reopened.

Chief Minister Andrew Barr has indicated that the plan is to move to stage two restrictions on May 30 2020. This would allow up to 20 people to gather and the reopening of higher-risk businesses, including cinemas.

 

Northern Territory

The NT Government announced a Public Health Emergency effective 18 March 2020.

The Directions to Close Public Places, Services and Activities and Directions for Gatherings .

The NT government have announced that Stage Three of their “roadmap to the new normal” is anticipated to commence on 5 June 2020 (though the timing is subject to successful implementation of prior stages). This permits the public to:

  • Attend a cinema or theatre, concert hall, music hall, dance hall, nightclub or any other similar entertainment venue in approved configuration.
  • Attend an amusement venue.
  • Attend an arena, stadium, sporting facility including community and sporting competitions with spectators in approved seating configuration. However, if above 500 people the event requires a separately approved COVID-19 Safety Plan.

Prior to resuming operations, all businesses and organisations will be required to have a COVID-19 Safety Plan in place. Social distancing measures will still apply.

Update 8-5-2020

Refer to announcements made last week and the road map with timelines already in place.

Update 25-5-2020

From 15 May 2020:

  • Art galleries, museums, public memorials and public historic sites were open to the public
  • Public libraries were open to the public
  • Restaurants and cafes were open to the public
  • Bars, sports or RSL clubs (alcohol allowed with the consumption of food), excluding gaming activities, were reopened
  • Parks were reopened

From 5 June 2020:

  • Patrons will be able to attend a cinema or theatre, concert hall, music hall, dance hall, nightclub or any other similar entertainment venue
  • Licensed gaming activities including a TAB will be allowed to operate
  • Patrons will be able to attend amusement parks, community centres, or recreation centres
  • Patrons will be able to attend an arena, stadium, or sporting facility, including community and sporting competitions with spectators in approved seating configuration. However, if above 500 people the event requires a separately approved COVID-19 Safety Plan.
  • Major events will be approved on a case by case basis.
  • Biosecurity zones – limiting travel to remote communities – will be removed (interstate borders, however, will remain closed indefinitely).

 

Resources for Venues and Orgs

 

Snapshot Of Current Presenter Intent For 2021/22

On 7/5/2020 PAC Australia polled our presenter members as to their current response to programming and plans moving forward.

You can view the results so far here.

JobKeeper Payment Employer Guide Update – 11/5/2020

The Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry has published a seventh edition of their JobKeeper Payment Employer Guide.
New information is marked up in red.

PAC Australia & Culture Counts Impact Survey – 9/4/2020

Thank you to everyone who has already completed our impact survey. It’s the data we receive through these means which enable us to argue the case for more, critical funding.

This survey is for everyone  – not just venues/presenters.

https://culturecounts.cc/s/3FXCDe

This is a presenter/venue/producer version of a larger survey we’ve developed with Culture Counts – so while your responses will be added to a larger ‘pool’ of data, we will be able to filter the results based on your specific organisation type and location.

If you would like to view the questions ahead of time (noting not all will apply to each organisation), you can do so here.

PAC Australia Resources

If you’re looking for frameworks, metrics and useful language when quantifying your venue’s impact on and outcomes for your local community, be sure to reference our Performing Spaces guide. This guide was developed primarily for local government senior management, to assist them to grow community wellbeing through their performing arts centres and facilities.

Our most recent Economic Activity Report, which measures the scale of operations and economic activity of performing arts centres nationally may also be of use.

World Health Organisation – Advice & Downloads

Concise and up-to-date information on daily life during the COVID-19 outbreak is available here on the World Health Organisation’s website.

It includes an extensive library of downloads such as posters, flyers and fact sheets you might like to put up in your office or any public spaces.

Refunding Tickets

Respondents to the LPA’s Ticketing Code of Practice should note you are not required to provide a refund if consumers do not wish to attend an event due to fear of exposure to coronavirus, though you may wish to provide refunds on a discretionary basis.

As per usual trading conditions, ticketholders are entitled to an automatic refund if an event is cancelled (when the ticket is purchased from an authorised seller) or rescheduled and the customer doesn’t want to attend at the rescheduled time/location.

You’ll find a copy of the current industry and consumer versions of the LPA Ticket Code of Practice on our resources page.

*Thank you to the LPA for providing this advice (email, Evelyn Richardson, 2/3/2020)

We’d recommend all members take the opportunity to ensure you have clear event cancellation policies in place, not only for ticketholders, but also within your hire/presenter contracts. You may also wish to check/clarify Force Majeure, event cancellation and non-appearance clauses directly with your insurance broker.

Risk Management Plan – Example

Arts Centre Melbourne have generously shared a coronavirus inclusive Risk Management Plan, which you may also find useful. You can download it here.

Business Continuity Plan – Template

The Queensland Government has a helpful Business Continuity Plan template on their website.

Webinars

On March 6, 2020, Theatre Communications Group conducted a webinar about “immediate operational steps theatres can take”. A recording is available here.

The Event Safety Alliance have delivered an event-specific “Preparing your organisation for the coronavirus outbreak” webinar. The recording is available here.

Working remotely

These articles may come in handy if you find yourself or your team needing to work from home to avoid catching or spreading the virus (or the flu, or even a case of the Mondays):

The Verge have put together an extensive guide to staying productive, staying in touch, and staying sane while working at home. Find it all here.

The best tools and apps for remote working

How to manage a remote team

How to set up a working-from-home environment

From our friends at CircuitWest, a collection of links to help keep you and your team engaged.

Jobs Hub

We all want to keep as many employees on board as possible during this difficult time, but in the event you’re not able to, you might like to point people to the Jobs Hub for reference. This highlights industries and employment opportunities still in high demand.

Support Act Arts Wellbeing Collective

You can find the Arts Wellbeing Collective Helpline poster available to download here.

Additional Support Act resources, including additional signs and poster downloads, are available here.

Reopening Venues

Safety guidelines:

PAC Australia is working with the LPA to develop COVID-19-specific safety guidelines for re-opening venues to ensure you have resources to develop your own COVID-19 health and safety plans. We’ll also consult with the VMA and colleagues in the sports industry to ensure there’s consistency across the various industries who engage in public mass gatherings.

We’re also working through a range of “readiness to reopen” issues with government and other stakeholders including the viability of performances where there are capacity limits in place, operational considerations of social distancing, capacity to re-engage staff, and more.

First venues advised when they can re-open:

The NT government have announced that Stage Three of their “roadmap to the new normal” is anticipated to commence on 5 June 2020 (subject to successful implementation of prior stages). This permits the public to:

  • Attend a cinema or theatre, concert hall, music hall, dance hall, nightclub or any other similar entertainment venue in approved configuration.
  • Attend an amusement venue.
  • Attend an arena, stadium, sporting facility including community and sporting competitions with spectators in approved seating configuration. However, if above 500 people the event requires a separately approved COVID-19 Safety Plan.

 

Prior to resuming operations, all businesses and organisations will be required to have a COVID-19 Safety Plan in place. Social distancing measures will still apply.

Getting Audiences Back

Audience Outlook Monitor – the audience sentiment study:

Organisations who have been invited to the Australia Council / Patternmakers / WolfBrown study will commence data collection over the next week.

We expressed our dismay to the funding partners as soon as this project was announced about the lack of representation of venues in this study, given your direct relationships with audiences in communities across Australia, and this has since resulted in more venues being asked to participate, particularly in the states of funding partners on the project (VIC, NSW, QLD).

That said, the research partners are doing a brilliant job to ensure as many regions as possible will be captured in the study, and the results will be made available to everyone, not just the participants. However, we have confirmed that the survey protocol will be made available to all PAC Australia organisations if you feel the study hasn’t adequately captured your audience base.

Here’s a timeline for how this will happen:

  1. Data collection with confirmed study partners will commence next week
  2. The first dashboard of information will be available by mid-May
  3. All PAC Australia members will be invited to participate in a member-only webinar to:
    1. Discuss the data already collected and learn how to use the dashboard and the analyse results, including reviewing the geographic distribution of the audiences surveyed.
    2. Review the survey protocol to decide whether you wish to initiate the study directly with your audiences.
  4. The second wave of the study will commence in July
  5. The third wave will commence in September

We’ll send an invite for the members-only webinar when the date is confirmed.

UPDATE 18-5-20 – PHASE ONE REPORT NOW AVAILABLE

Initial results from the Audience Outlook Monitor are now available, with over 23,000 Australians polled. Read the Phase One results here.

 

Resources For Artists & Freelancers

 

Brisbane freelancer Lenine Burke put together this step-by-step plan of all the things, little and big, you could be doing to take some control back in your situation, stay organised and proactive, and keep in it for the long run.

The Australian Red Cross has a comprehensive list of ways to undertake (and enjoy) social isolation for a variety of people/circumstances. Have a look here.

If you need to set up a profit and loss statement, you can find a handy guide on how to do that right here.

The fine folk at ActNow Theatre have compiled a huge list of info, from who’s got the best mobile phone plans going right now to some freelancing platforms you might want to check out.

Useful Facebook Groups & Pages

Arts Tasker – work, skill and community sharing during COVID-19

Australian Arts amidst COVID-19

Agri Arts – Jobs for Arts workers in the Agricultural Industry in Australia

Marketable Skills from Professional Artists – technically a Google Form, not a Facebook group. You’ll notice the language is American but we’ve been assured it’ll be a global resource with valuable connections to Australia.

Performing Lines have put together a bumper edition of their regular Opportunities roundup, including jobs, online workshops and more.

 

 

To Help You Stay Engaged

 

You might like to take any extra time indoors or in isolation to pick up a new skill, try a creative outlet or engage deeply with a topic that interests you. Here are some links to help.

From The PAC Australia Archives

If you’re up for expanding your mind and/or some professional development, we’ve got you covered: a selection of keynotes and panels recorded at our past PAC Australia PAX & Conference events are all available right here on our website.

New Knowledge At A Low Cost (Or No Cost)

The Australia Council for the Arts have established an extensive free series of webinars aimed at professional development for all kinds of arts professionals, called Creative Connections. See the schedule and register here.

Audible has made hundreds of audiobooks available to listen to for free. Head to this page and start listening.

Ableton Music Production lessons are available at about 95% off their usual (steep) price. Grab a bargain here.

JSTOR are making additional content freely available on their online platform, in addition to the many already online. Get browsing.

The Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI) in Melbourne are hosting free online courses called Running Free, on a variety of topics from budgeting to screenwriting. Bookmark it here.

Sundance Co//ab have made an impressive archive of online masterclasses – from web series, documentary filmmaking, branding, pitching and more – all available here.

Enjoy From Home

Critical Stages have compiled an ongoing list of shows, ceremonies, events and opportunities to engage online in their new Stage and Stream weekly series.

Perth Festival have put together a huge list of online avenues for exploration, engagement and enjoyment in the arts and cultural sector globally. Have a look.

London’s National Theatre are streaming one production from their incredible NT Live archives each week, starting on April 2, in a program called National Theatre At Home.

Melbourne Symphony Orchestra have uploaded a full program and performance of Beethoven’s Symphony No 7.

 

Music Licensing Update / Live-Streaming Performances

 

Arts Law Centre of Australia have put together this Fact Sheet regarding putting works online during this time.

In terms of licensing policies for streamed events, you can view the most up to date guidance from APRA here for Dramatic Context Events and Music Events. If you need specific advice or clarification, please email online@apra.com.au

One Music licences have been paused for businesses and organisations affected by COVID-19. We encourage you to contact OneMusic directly to confirm how this applies to you, however it may mean:

  • Accounts placed on hold including any collection activity i.e. outstanding invoices can be deferred
  • If your licence continues when you reopen, your account could be adjusted to account for the period where music was not in use. Special payment arrangements may also be put in place to assist you moving forward
  • In the worst case scenario of a permanent cessation of trading due to COVID-19, your account can be cancelled and any fees paid in advance will be refunded.

 

The LPA have compiled a round up of the government directives regarding the live streaming of performances:

NSW     

The streaming of a live performance is permitted as long as the venue is closed to the public.

Section 7(1)(c) of the Public Health (COVID-19 Restrictions on Gathering and Movement) Order.

VIC        

An entertainment facility (e.g. theatre, music hall, concert hall/auditorium) may operate for the purpose of allowing a recorded performance to occur. The term ‘recorded performance’ is not defined in the directives.

Section 7(3) of the Restricted Activity Directions.

QLD

Live streaming of a performance by no more than 2 people is permissible, with a requirement to observe social distancing rules.

Non-essential business, activity and undertaking Closure Direction.

WA        

Live streaming from an entertainment venue is permitted by no more than 10 people provided that the venue is closed to the public.
Section 8 of Closure of Certain Places of Business, Worship and Entertainment Directions.

SA          

Live streaming of a live performance by a small group is permitted where the total number of persons present in any indoor space at the same time does not exceed 1 person per 4 square metres.
Section 5g of Emergency Management Direction — Non-essential Business and Other Activities.

TAS       

Live streaming is permitted in concert venues, theatres, arenas, auditoriums, stadiums and other similar premises, as long as:

  • Those on the premises at the time of the live stream do not exceed 5 persons; and
  • 1.5m is maintained between each person present; and
  • There is a minimum of 4 square metres per person.

Schedule 1 Section 8 of the Mass Gatherings Direction.

ACT       

Live streaming is permitted in a concert venue, theatre, arena, auditorium or stadium as long as the live streamed performance is undertaken by a group of persons sufficiently small to enable social distancing of 1 person per 4 square metres.
Section 6x of Public Health (Closure of Non-Essential Business or Undertaking) Emergency Direction 2020.

NT         

The NT directives allow services or activities to be provided or conducted online. Refer to Section 9 of Directions to Close Public Places, Services and Activities.

 

Look After Your Mental Health

 

Entertainment Assist have created a short series of free mental health webinars, in a program called Intermission. Topics include isolation, finance, healthy habits and sleep.

Beyond Blue have put together this excellent resource on how to look after your mental health during these strange and difficult times. We’re all in this together.

The Arts Wellbeing Collective is also available if you need to brush up on some useful self-care techniques, or call their hotline if you need someone to talk to. The AWC has also collected a series of resources you might find useful which you can find right here.

You can find the Arts Wellbeing Collective Helpline poster available to download here.

Additional Support Act resources, including additional signs and poster downloads, are available here.