As the coronavirus pandemic continues to ravage the global economy, Netflix is doing its bit to support thousands of entertainment workers now out of a job. On Friday, the company announced that it would establish a $100 million relief fund to ease some of the hardships faced by jobless hourly wage earners and those who are hired on a project-to-project basis.
Announcing the initiative in an official blog post, Netflix’s Chief Content Officer, Ted Sarandos, said: “Most of the fund will go towards support for the hardest hit workers on our own productions around the world. We’re in the process of working out exactly what this means, production by production. This is in addition to the two weeks pay we’ve already committed to the crew and cast on productions we were forced to suspend last week”.
While the lion’s share of the funds will go to Netflix’s own employees who were laid off following the cancellation of the company’s film and TV productions last week, the initiative will also assist the broader film and television industry, including those from third-party production houses and studios, after all leading media organizations in the country shut down their productions because of COVID-19.
According to Netflix, $15 million of the fund will go to third parties and non-profits providing emergency relief to out-of-work crew and cast in countries where the company has a large production base. Apart from donating millions to emergency relief organizations working with entertainment workers in the US and Canada, the company also said that it is working with existing industry organizations in Europe, Latin America and Asia to create similar creative community emergency relief efforts.