Hundreds of Musicians Sign Open Letter Demanding Unemployment Benefits for Self-Employed Workers

Fugazi, Neutral Milk Hotel, and Bikini Kill are among the names listed on the letter written up in the wake of COVID-19.

Hundreds of musicians are banding together to demand unemployment relief for self-employed workers following the effects of the coronavirus on touring musicians and others in the music industry who have suddenly found themselves out of work. Spearheaded by the same folks who launched the No Music for ICE project a while back following news of Amazon’s involvement in the festival scene, the open letter is a live Google form, which can be viewed (and signed, should you meet the qualifications) here.

“We ask that you ensure the next Federal relief package includes the extension of unemployment and other benefits to all musicians, DJs, and all gig economy workers who have lost their income due to COVID-19,” the statement reads. “Workers should be able to use any income—including 1099 earnings and demonstrable anticipated future income wiped out by COVID-19—to apply for unemployment and other benefits.”

Launched this morning, the letter already has a massive list of names attached to it, including Fugazi, Neutral Milk Hotel, Bikini Kill, Deerhoof, The Format, Chris Walla, Girlpool, Speedy Ortiz, Moor Mother, and Downtown Boys, who helped launch the project.

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