More than 100 workers in live events and entertainment rallied in Indianapolis Monday to demand more federal government relief through the pandemic. It comes as local theater unions across the country push for the return of an additional $600 of unemployment benefits.
With rallying cries like “Save Our Stages!” a crowd of event workers rallied on the step of the Soldiers and Sailors Monument. They say thousands of Hoosiers are still struggling with a lack of work and income as live entertainment and events remain mostly canceled.
Joanne Sanders is the vice president of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees. She says more than 80,000 people in Indianapolis alone rely on tourism and events for a paycheck. More than half of them are still unemployed.
“We are the invisible workforce because we are behind the scenes,” she said. “Most people don’t even recognize what it takes to put live entertainment together. They go, they’re happy, and they leave.”
Meanwhile multiple news outlets report House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the White House are still trying to agree on what another round of federal relief might look like.