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MPs launch inquiry into night time economy

They hope to gain more insight into the impacts of Covid-19 on a sector that has been ‘berated, scapegoated, and even blamed for rising infections’

The All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for the night time economy has commenced an urgent enquiry into the effects of Covid-19 on the industry.

The group’s inquiry is being led by Jeff Smith MP, and has asked for evidence from those involved in the industry on what challenges the sector faces and how it can be reopened.

Formed in December 2020, the group aims to gain a greater understanding of the crisis that the night time economy faces as a result of continued restrictions.

Smith, chair of the APPG for the night time economy, said that as the third national lockdown progresses “there has never been a more important time for government to address the urgent needs” of the sector.

He added: “Despite playing such a vital role in our local communities and UK economy, nightlife businesses have been repeatedly overlooked by the Government, and we are determined to ensure that the specific challenges facing the sector are addressed. This inquiry will be a vital first step in our work.”

The parliamentary group will be supported by the Night Time Industries Association, who will help with consultations running throughout January for a report scheduled to be released in February.

Michael Kill, CEO at the NTIA, has called on all members of the sector that has been “berated, scapegoated, and even blamed for rising infections” to partake in the APPG survey. 

He said: “Our sector has slipped through the cracks of insufficient support packages and borne the brunt of ever-changing and inconsistent restrictions.

“We urge all those who work in the night-time economy, or simply enjoy a night out, to take part in the APPG survey to help policymakers understand the importance of our vital sector.”

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