HELSINKI—Dozens took part in event organizers demonstration at the Citizens’ Square and the steps of the Parliament Building on Tuesday afternoon.
With restrictions related to the coronavirus pandemic, the event industry is, according Tapahtumateollisuus ry, the arranger of the protest, in danger of losing as much as €1.5 billion. “Without events, nothing happens.” That’s their motto.
While catchier in Finnish—Ilman tapahtumia ei tapahdu mitään—the message is serious in both languages.
Tapahtumateollisuus ry is a recently established roof organization for about 3,200 companies worth a total of €2.35 billion. The industry employs about 20,000 full-time workers with temporary workers totaling to about 175,000.
Speakers like Reijo Kantola from Taikalyhty Oy, a company specialized in organizing fairs, emphasized the professional attitude of the entrepreneurs in the industry. They work effectively and are easily capable of putting together events that follow the government guidelines to the dot.
Perhaps in an effort to give a glimpse of their professional behavior, the protesters at the steps of the parliament sat within a few meters distance from each other. All wore masks; some wore funny hats. They didn’t speak. And the area was isolated with a yellow-red tape.
When a few dozen protesters had finished sitting at the chilly steps, another group arrived to take their place. They also wore masks and funny hats and were quiet but like others before them, they were hopeful the government will pick up their message:
They are in desperate need of financial support.
Before it’s too late.