Live Nation is setting new vaccine rules as COVID-19 cases surge again nationwide.
The company has established a system whereby artists can require attendees and staff at their live events to be fully vaccinated or show a negative COVID test, as allowed by law, CEO Michael Rapino announced to employees on Friday. “We know people are eager to return to live events and we hope these measures encourage even more people to get vaccinated,” Rapino wrote. “That is the number one thing anyone can do to take care of those around them and we are encouraging as many shows as possible to adopt this model.”
The artist preference model was already implemented at other “major shows” including Lollapalooza, Rapino added. On an earnings call on Tuesday, Live Nation president and CFO Joe Berchtold revealed that “over 90 percent of the people [attending Lollapalooza] were fully vaccinated.”
The memo also announced a vaccination requirement for employees entering events, venues or offices, with a few exceptions. The mandate will take into effect Oct. 4, when Live Nation offices will reopen for a “flex work” arrangement. The company is additionally giving employees who haven’t yet been vaccinated with a paid day off for each dose appointment.
“Our business and our industry is about uniting people and vaccines are one of the greatest tools for making sure that everyone can continue to enjoy live music together,” Rapino wrote. “We’ve gone through a lot this past year and it’s remarkable to see how far we’ve come.”
Live Nation’s announcement follows similar vaccine edicts from major U.S. companies. After Hollywood’s major studios and guilds came to a short-term agreement allowing producers to require vaccination for cast and crew in “Zone A” on sets, Netflix has implemented the system and Amazon is in talks to. Netflix, Facebook, Google, Twitter, The New York Times and The Washington Post have all recently revealed that they are requiring workers going to the office to get vaccinated.