Musicians’ Union quoted during Parliament debate on the future for musicians touring the EU
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The Musicians' Union (MU) has paid tribute to the numerous MPs who this afternoon acknowledged in Parliament the campaign to enable musicians to work permit-free in the EU.
The debate was triggered by an urgent question from Pete Wishart MP, who called on Minister for Culture Caroline Dinenage to account for the impact of the Brexit deal on touring musicians.
Musicians' Union (MU) General Secretary Horace Trubridge was directly quoted during the debate and referred to as an industry expert, and the MU more generally was quoted on a further five occasions. Once again, the Minister confirmed that the UK proposals for reciprocal touring without the need for work permits were based on the MU’s proposals for a ‘Musicians’ Passport.’
Horace Trubridge said:
“We welcome this debate initiated by MU member Pete Wishart but it raises more questions than it answers. We really need to see the details of the proposals made by the EU and the UK’s counter offer in order to identify where the problems lie. It would be a tragedy if the livelihoods of so many performers and ancillary workers were to end up as a political football being kicked around by the UK and the EU. I urge the Secretary of State to step up and secure a deal that enables frictionless work permit and carnet free touring for UK and EU performers.”
Ms Dinenage clarified that EU proposals would have covered ad hoc performances only, would not have covered technicians or other crew members and, crucially, would not have exempted musicians from the need for work permits. In addition, she said that the proposals would also have been incompatible with the UK Government’s wish to ‘reclaim our borders’ as it would have enshrined visa-free stays for EU citizens in the UK.
Shadow Minister for Culture Alison McGovern MP asked the Minister to urgently reopen negotiations with the EU and to also publish details of the proposals and counter proposals. Ms Dinenage confirmed that if the EU was willing to consider the UK’s proposal – which would have removed the need for work permits, as well as covering technicians and crew – she would happily re-enter discussions.
Source Musicians Union
January 19, 2021 8:00am ET by Pressparty