Jane Longhurst, chief executive of the Meetings Industry Association, said: “The Meetings Industry Association (mia) welcomes the announcement that the furlough scheme cut-off date has been extended by government to the end of June, providing crucial support to the business meetings and events industry.
“As we continue to engage the industry and voice their needs, a recent survey issued to the industry found that 82% of organisations are reliant on the scheme to limit the substantial long term damage gathering restrictions have had on industry operations and the consequential generation of income.
“Despite this welcomed extension, it remains crucial that the government provides further support to businesses and addresses the indirect barriers to continuity that are still enforced under the scheme.
“The industry has voiced its need for more flexible furlough terms, including the allowance of employees to volunteer back to the business. It is crucial that we don’t now stand still but continue to engage the entire workforce to prepare for the busy event schedule that is forecast in Q4 and beyond to compensate for recent postponements.
“The mia will continue to engage and listen to its members and the industry who will ensue that these promises are accessible, effective and kept.”