Resources and Support for Musicians During the Novel Corona Virus Crisis

Through March, MROC has been fast-tracking the distribution of all available royalties – from both domestic and foreign sources – to musicians in the hopes of lessening some of the impact of the Corona Virus crisis on our membership. We have already distributed more than $400,000 this month and plan additional distributions in the coming weeks.

However, the Canadian government recently announced the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) for which many of you may be eligible. Because we don’t want to inadvertently impact your ability to receive all available support from the program, we are temporarily holding back distributions until the rules of the program are clear. MROC has signed on, along with other collective management organizations (CMOs), to a letter to the Prime Minster’s Office and the Minister of Finance requesting clarification that royalties are not to be included in applicants’ reported revenue. We will update you when this is clarified.

If you have a Canadian bank account and have not already done so, please sign up for direct deposit, as this is the best way to ensure your royalties reach you. For those of you who cannot sign up for direct deposit, we will continue to issue cheques but ask your patience, as our ability to issue and mail cheques is limited with our current remote work arrangements.

We are circulating information about various types of support available to musicians via our Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram accounts. You can sign up for those feeds through the links at the bottom of our website page to receive information as it becomes available. Several organizations have rounded up information on the various types of support – government plans and other – available to musicians. Some of the most comprehensive we’ve seen are:

Canadian Federation of Musicians http://www.cfmusicians.org/resources

Unison Benevolent https://unisonfund.ca/covid-19-financial-assistance-resource-list

CIMA https://cimamusic.ca/news/recent-news/read,article/17800/covid-19-information-resources-for-canada-s-music-industry

SOCAN https://www.socanmagazine.ca/news/socans-daily-covid-19-updates/

If you have exhausted other options for support and are in serious need, MROC may be able to provide you with a one-time advance on your 2020 royalties. Contact us at info@musiciansrights.ca if you’d like us to look into this option. Keep in mind that an advance from MROC might affect your eligibility for support or result in a lower amount of support from CERB or other programs, so check the rules for those programs before you consider this option.

We hope you find this information helpful. We will do all we can to help you through this extremely difficult time. Stay safe and healthy!

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