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Heaven Live becomes first major employer to back BECTU's live events campaign

1 May 2019

Live music and club venue Heaven has signed BECTU's 'Set the Standard' live events campaign to change industry norms.

Iconic live events venue Heaven has backed calls by BECTU for an industry-wide set of standards to improve working conditions for workers.

BECTU has recently launched a comprehensive set of standards for the live events industry to fight for better working conditions for its members in the sector.

The campaign comes as more than three quarters (76%) of BECTU members in the live events sector felt pay in the sector needed to be improved by setting minimum rates. A further two thirds (69%) of respondents named long hours as their biggest concern in their roles, followed by almost half (46%) reporting lack of crew welfare facilities and one in three (30%) expressing concern over health and safety.

Heaven's Mark Ellicott said: "The wide disparity of terms and conditions of employment for lighting and sound technicians at venues and theatres across London is such that any effort to harmonise them must be welcomed.

"Too many venues assume that by virtue of the self employed status of most technicians they can call shots as regards imposing terms and conditions which very often are quite iniquitous. Sound and lighting technicians are in many respects the single most important part of any event. Without them an event cannot happen. Technicians themselves need to stop acting independently one from the other and pool their resources to act collectively.

"Once they do that and understand that they have a shared interest progress towards harmonisation becomes inevitable. Venue operators will no longer be able to ignore them then”.

BECTU’s lead official on the ‘Set the standard!’ campaign Naomi Taylor said: “We are delighted that Heaven is our first big venue to back the campaign, showing important leadership in the industry and highlighting best practice."

It has given a real boost to the campaign and we are excited for this to now go from strength to strength.”

What are the BECTU Live Events Network standards calling for?

  • Ensure shifts are a reasonable length and include reasonable and timely breaks
  • Work towards the development of fair and consistent rates and T&Cs
  • Work towards providing a break space for staff with secure lockers where possible
  • Support workers in getting H&S training and abide by H&S law & HSE guidance
  • Promote zero tolerance to bullying, harassment and inappropriate behaviour, and ensure any complaints are dealt with effectively and promptly
  • Aim to create a more diverse workforce (i.e. working towards providing facilities for pregnant/nursing women and access for disabled workers)

Members and workers can show their support for the standards by putting their name to the standards here

Employers can sign up to the standards by contacting BECTU directly.

Share your support with the hashtag #SOSLiveEvents and like the Facebook page

Find out more information on BECTU and how to join here