San Diego event workers unite at ‘The Empty Event Rally’ to fight for industry support

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – As a result of the Covid-19 Pandemic, businesses, employees and attendees have faced the catastrophic effects of bans on mass gatherings. With over 12 million people unemployed from the events industry, making up 33% of all unemployed nationwide, the events industry was the first to be impacted by pandemic related restrictions and will be last to enter reopening phases.

San Diego will join in a national effort to rally support for the events industry on Thursday, August 13 at 2:00 PM by hosting a socially-distanced Empty Event Rally.

The hospitality and events industry in San Diego consists of over 199,890 professionals in the event space, and visitors who attend conferences and events generated nearly $329 million in occupancy tax revenue for the fiscal year July 2018-June 2019. The forced cancellation of tens of thousands of San Diego events has resulted in mass layoffs, high unemployment rates for the industry, the looming reality of small business closures and catastrophic economic corrosion.

The Empty Event Rally will be held in front of the County Administration Center at the Waterfront Park and will feature 48 tables each representing 250,000 Events Industry workers out of work due to COVID-19 with 480 empty seats representing the positions of those workers that cannot be performed. Both in-person and virtual comments will be made by local elected officials and industry leaders expressing the vital need for urgent action.

Kevin Hellman of SDS Events shared more information on the upcoming “Empty Event Rally” on Good Morning San Diego.


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