Two years after the start of the corona pandemic, the event industry is facing a wave of layoffs, according to industry sources. The reason for this is the expiry of the short-time allowance after 24 months. “More than three quarters of the event companies will terminate their employees in March 2022 due to a lack of short-time work,” said Jan Kalbfleisch, Managing Director of the Federal Association of Event Management, the German Press Agency.
He was referring to a survey in which more than 800 industry companies took part. According to this, employees in two-thirds of the companies have been on short-time work for more than 20 months. For almost half of those surveyed, the proportion of short-time work is over 80 percent.
If the companies had to pay the salaries and social security contributions themselves in full, the majority of them would lack the capital for a new start, explained Kalbfleisch. They would then have to lay off employees because they could not cover their costs. Companies are losing valuable skilled workers in this way.
The federal government is sacrificing the event industry, criticized Kalbfleisch. Almost all events have now been cancelled. There is no prospect of improvement for the more than 100,000 companies.
The short-time allowance that employers have to apply to the employment agency for their employees is intended to compensate for a loss of wages in times of crisis. Access was made easier during the corona pandemic. Most recently, the federal government extended the maximum entitlement period from 24 months to the end of March.
Cancellations of trade fairs, concerts, conferences and celebrations cause problems for event outfitters, technicians, artists, stand builders and many other people involved. Lower corona numbers in summer and autumn temporarily brought part of the business back. In the past few weeks, however, the industry has experienced another wave of cancellations, according to the association. (dpa/rs)