As at 22 June 2022 – Clarification on Performer use of Masks when Interacting with Audience Members

We received the following advice in June from Government regarding Performers mingling with Audience members:

  • RE: performers wanting to do ‘meet and greets’ after a show with audience members – “They do need to wear a mask in this instance. They are only exempted from the masking requirements for workers when they are ‘an entertainer performing at those premises or in those circumstances, provided that they are COMPLYING WITH THE 2-METRE PHYSICAL DISTANCING RULE in relation to the audience’.”
  • RE: performers walking amongst the audience to interact with the audience members – “Performers are only exempted from the masking requirements provided that they are COMPLYING WITH THE 2-METRE PHYSICAL DISTANCING RULE in relation to the audience’.”

Always check the Unite Against COVID-19 site for up to date information.

Find your current Traffic Light Colour here. Learn about what to do at each colour here; there is a section for Events under each colour.

You can book your vaccine appointment here. Boosters are recommended after 3 months.

We have recently updated the information found on this page following some repairs to our website, but still check the government web links to be sure you have the most up to date information. You can also check our social media platforms regularly for the latest information on financial support options, updates for events, etc.

COVID-19 Resources

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Government COVID-19 Website

The Government website dedicated entirely to COVID-19 can be found here:

Unite Against COVID-19

This website unites all the others, and is constantly changing with updated information as the pandemic evolves.

**Remember when contacting government departments, funding providers, or anyone else it can be helpful to have a screen shot or image of the web page whose information you’re referencing. That way if the page is updated, you still have the information to hand.**

At Unite Against COVID-19 you will find information and links to:

  • the Ministry of Health (Locations of Interest, Contact Tracing, etc.)
  • Financial Assistance
  • Traffic Light Settings
  • Self-Isolation
  • Staying mentally healthy
  • Vaccinations
  • Reopening Borders
  • Latest Updates, and more.

You can use the Government COVID-19 Toolkit to access branded assets and resources.

A financial support tool is now available here to help you find out what financial support you could get.

Government have also released a list of support and service contact phone numbers for a range of topics.

EVENTS: For current details on gatherings and events, visit the Traffic Lights page, select the current setting colour (RED/ORANGE/GREEN), and check the area for “Events & Public Facilities”. You can also check the section from MBIE & NZ Major events below.

MANDATORY RECORD KEEPING: From 11:59pm on Friday 25 March, there is no requirement to scan in or for a business to display a QR code poster or have mandatory record keeping. However, it’s advised that people do not delete the app just yet, as new variants may require future use of them.

VACCINES: COVID-19 vaccines are free and voluntary for the general public in New Zealand. Learn more and keep up to date on Vaccine plans here. As at 16 Feb 2022, boosters can be given 3 months after your last vaccine.

VACCINE PASSES: From 11:59pm on 4 April 2022, there is no requirement to use My Vaccine Pass. Until 4 April, where My Vaccine Passes are not used, the current restrictions remain — but after this time, the new capacity limits will apply to everyone. After 4 April, businesses will still be able to use the system if they would like to.

There are a number of resources around Vaccination Privacy to clarify what can and cannot be asked by employers. If you’re unsure about disclosing your vaccination status or have any other uncertainties, have a look at the following 3 pages:

Create an account and log in to access your COVID-19 Vaccination Record at My Covid Record. This is where you can download domestic and international digital vaccination certificates, find your COVID-19 test results, record your positive and negative COVID tests, and more.

INTERNATIONAL TRAVEL: Visit this link for current information on travelling to, leaving, and transiting through NZ.

RECONNECTING NEW ZEALANDERS TO THE WORLD FORUM: On the 12th of August 2021, the NZ Government held a forum regarding their strategy for reconnecting with the world while maintaining an elimination strategy for COVID-19. You can watch the forum, read transcripts of the speeches, and access updates here.

MASKS: As the pandemic evolves, so does mask use to reduce the spread of COVID. Read the most current details on when and how to wear a mask here.

IRD COVID-19 Tax Relief

As at 22 June 2022: The Government has announced a Cost of Living Payment, which will be paid from 1 August 2022. The Cost of Living Payment is a payment to help with the rising costs of inflation for eligible individuals. IRD will pay you the Cost of Living Payment automatically if you’re eligible for it. You do not need to apply. Read the full details at the link above.

The IRD page on COVID-19 can be found here:


Topics on the IRD COVID page include:

  • Business and Organisations; this includes the Small Business Cashflow Scheme. Small to medium businesses and organisations, including sole traders and the self-employed, may be eligible for a one-off loan if they have been adversely affected by COVID-19. The Small Business Cashflow (loan) Scheme has been extended until 31 Dec 2023.In February 2022, the Government announced that the SBCS base loan would increase to $20,000 (from $10,000). This means that for new loans the amount that can be borrowed will be $20,000, plus $1,800 per full-time equivalent employee (up to 50 employees). The loan repayment period remains 5 years (60 months).Existing borrowers will also benefit from this change as they will be able to apply for a top-up loan of $10,000, plus any amount they were eligible for but did not take in their initial loan. Applications opened on 21 March 2022.
  • Information for Individuals and Families
  • How to Manage your Tax; including changes to your responsibilities around filing and paying.

**We highly recommending exploring and reading all the options available to you under the Information for Businesses and Organisations. There are far too many to outline them all here. It may seem a daunting amount of information to read through, but a thorough search could help your business or family.**

The COVID-19 Leave Subsidies Page will bring you to pages on various options and “issues” for both employers and the self-employed on the various subsidy payments and how you should report these. They give examples for a variety of self-employed and employer situations which are very helpful for clarifying taxation in various situations.

Please read these implications thoroughly, and consult your accountant or call IRD directly if you have any questions on the taxation or implications.

Discounted tax for your first year in business. If you’re new to business, you may be eligible for a discount for paying your income tax early. This applies to sole traders, contractors, and partnerships. You can read more here.

ACC – COVID-19 Information for Businesses

ACC have a page relating to the COVID-19 pandemic’s impact on businesses.

Because the financial impact of COVID-19 may be ongoing, and changes to your business can happen quickly, ACC are here to support you if you’re unsure you can meet your ACC obligations. The most important thing is to let them know before the due date to avoid any penalties. However, if you currently owe them for an outstanding levy, and you can’t make a payment due to the impact of COVID-19, call or email them. All the contact details and more are found on the ACC page link above.

Wage Subsidies & ACC Levies (direct from the ACC webpage as at 16 Feb 2022):


As outlined on Inland Revenue’s website, wage subsidies should be passed onto the employee by the employer and processed as part of the employee’s normal wages.

All deductions, such as PAYE, KiwiSaver, and child support, should be made as normal. This includes ACC Earners’ levies. Through these deductions, employees pay their Earners’ levy as they normally would to cover the cost of non-work injuries.

As this wage subsidy is part of an employer’s payroll, we’ll use it as part of their Work levy calculation for the 2019/20 financial year, and for 2020/21 for the continuation of the wage subsidy.


The wage subsidy received by a self-employed person is not subject to ACC Work levies. Under section 14 of the Accident Compensation Act 2001, the self-employed income must be derived from personal exertions before it will be liable for ACC Work levies for self-employed people.

The ACC Earners’ levy component for self-employed will also not be applied to the wage subsidy received by a self-employed person.

As set out on the Inland Revenue website, self-employed customers should return the wage subsidy as ‘Government subsidies‘ box in the IR3 return. If it’s included as part of the ‘Self-Employed Income’ we’ll assume the total amount is liable for ACC levies and calculate your invoice based on the amount declared.

If you need to change an already filed 2020 IR3 return, please visit Inland Revenue’s website. Changes made at Inland Revenue will be automatically sent to us so your levy invoice can be invoiced correctly.

Work and Income

Work and Income New Zealand have a page dedicated to COVID-19 here:


WINZ offers Leave Support, which is still available. This is for employers, including self-employed people, to help pay their employees who need to self-isolate and can’t work from home.

WINZ offers Short-Term Absence Payments, which are still available. This is for businesses, including self-employed people, to help pay their workers who cannot work from home while they wait for a COVID-19 test result.

There is a questionnaire you can complete to check what assistance or payments you could get from WINZ.

WINZ is administering an Apprenticeship Support Program that will be implemented from August 2020. This is a cross-agency government response to help employers retain and bring on new apprentices, including Mana in Mahi participants, while dealing with the effects of COVID-19. Read more below under Professional Development Opportunities.

Further support is available in the form of the Flexi-Wage Subsidy. This is for helping businesses hire staff and getting them the skills needed to do the job. There’s a wage contribution, as well as training and ongoing support if it’s needed.

Please read all parts of the WINZ pages before applying for your chosen support to ensure you fully understand your responsibilities under each payment type.

More clarity on taxation can be found on the IRD website; see the section on Taxes above.

MBIE & NZ Major Events – Funding & Information for Businesses

Visit the NZ Major Events page on COVID-19 Information for Event Organisers here. It covers event guidance, the Voluntary COVID Code, business guidance, and more.

The Events Transition Support Payment (ETSP) scheme is designed to provide assurance to organisers of large-scale events, so they can continue organising our much anticipated events over 2022. The scheme is now extended for eligible events, including business events, scheduled to begin between 4 April 2022 until 31 January 2023. Keep checking their page as eligibility requirements change. You can also read this page of Tips for Submitting an ETSP Claim ETNZ received in Feb 2022. The ETSP MBIE team can be reached via the emails found in the Tips document. If you’re having trouble with the application or making a claim, don’t quite meet the criteria, or have any other barriers to applying for support, PLEASE EMAIL THEM. They are keen to help our sector and get financial support to the right people.

The Creative and Cultural Events Incubator to support new or developing events toward becoming internationally significant or financially self-sustaining.

The Major Events Fund is an investment fund to support major events to achieve specific outcomes that align with government priorities. It is open year round.

This $50 million Regional Events Fund aims to stimulate the domestic tourism market by supporting existing events to continue to operate, or supporting new events to form. Have you been keeping up with developments in the Regional Event Fund in your region? Many regions have now listed their funding plans and/or how to apply. Get in touch with your regional representatives via the link above to learn more about how to apply for funding for your events.

A New Zealand Events Sector Voluntary COVID Code was published and signed off by the Director General of Public Health in 2020. This is specifically for our industry and was worked on by ETNZ along with other NZ events associations. We urge you to adopt this short Voluntary Code. Read more & download a copy here.

MBIE at :

Visit the page on COVID-19 for guidance for businesses. This includes information on operating under the COVID Protection Framework (Traffic Lights) for businesses. They have sections for Entertainment and for Events.

Do you still have financial questions or need support? You can call the free COVID-19 Business Helpline! North Island 0800 500 362 | South Island 0800 505 096 All New Zealand businesses, including sole traders, can get support and advice on: government financial support (e.g. low-interest loans & tax relief), what different alert levels mean for your business, business continuity, finding free or subsidised expert help (e.g. a business mentor or advisor). Employers can also get specific advice on people challenges, including staffing changes, employee wellness, and meeting your health and safety obligations.

Digital Boost – a new resource from MBIE. This site hosts free courses taught by experts on integrating digital skills to help your business.
Thinking about a Starting a Business? This page has some helpful tools and insights that might help.
Ministry for Culture and Heritage – Arts & Music Support

MCH COVID Recovery support funding and information can be found here. Keep checking their page for further initiatives and to read the full detail of funds as more become available.

The team at MCH can be reached at If you’re having trouble with the application for the support below, don’t quite meet the criteria, or have any other barriers to applying for support, PLEASE EMAIL THEM. They are keen to help our sector and get financial support to the right people.

COVID-19 Omicron Relief Funding – Following the shift to the ‘Red’ traffic light setting in January 2022, and growing pressures on the arts and culture sector, the Government is moving swiftly to provide more support for the arts and culture sector. As part of the Omicron Relief Funding, the  Arts and Culture Event Support Scheme will be boosted by $70.7 million – giving arts and cultural sector event organisers the confidence to plan and deliver events right through to the end of January 2023. The Cultural Sector Emergency Relief Fund has been provided an additional $35.5 million to fund more direct support for individuals and organisations most affected by the restrictions introduced in January 2022 to slow the spread of COVID-19.

2021 Delta Relief Funding – $37.5m in funding was brought forward from the Arts and Culture COVID Recovery Programme to support the cultural sector through the COVID-19 Delta response. This COVID-19 Delta Relief Funding comprises a number of measures, including the Cultural Sector Emergency Relief Fund; applications became available Friday 1 October 2021 for this relief fund, which is still open at January 2022.

Thanks to all who helped in 2020 by sharing ways to help this funding reach our industry. The more of us who add our voice, the more likely we are to be heard! The information can be found here, or on our news page here.

Looking for Work – Keep New Zealand Working and More

Keep New Zealand Working is an online recruitment tool that connects job seekers directly to the employer. You can register online here.

You can also explore the WINZ Work pages; this includes Job Search options. brings together information from across government to support Employment, Education, and Training.

Creative New Zealand

Find current information on the CNZ COVID-19 Response here.

If new funding comes available, remember Creative New Zealand define Practitioners in their Glossary as:

“The term encompasses a wider group than the term ‘artists’. It includes people involved in organising the project and can include producers, stage managers, technicians, publishers, editors, translators, curators, agents and dealers, as well as community-based practitioners. The term includes those people who may not necessarily classify themselves as artists, but who may be necessary to creating, presenting or distributing an artwork.”

Live Nation – Crew Nation Fund

The Crew Nation fund was set up in 2020 to help support live music crews who have been directly impacted as shows are put on pause due to COVID-19. The fund operates in waves, so there may not be a funding round open at the moment. You can read about eligibility, find FAQs, and check if applications are open for financial assistance here. They also offer information on mental health support worldwide.

The Beehive

On 15th April 2020 the Beehive released details on the Wage Subsidy, Tax Measures, and Leave Support that can be found here: COVID-19 Economic Response Package

In 2020 they also released the following PDF Factsheets outlining the original details of each subject area:

The Beehive post their press releases for you to read here; keep watching the releases page for updates on supporting people during the pandemic.

Ministry of Health

The Ministry of Health are tracking all current cases, as well as updating advice and recommendations here:

COVID-19 (novel coronavirus)

You can read more about locations of interest in current COVID cases here as well as information on types of contacts and actions to undertake if you are a contact.

The NZ Event Sector Voluntary COVID Code was published and signed off by the Director General of Public Health in June of 2020. The Event Sector Voluntary Code DOES NOT override any existing legal obligations, including the COVID-19 Protection Framework. This is specifically for our industry and was worked on by ETNZ along with other NZ events associations. You will find the most up-to-date version here.

PLEASE download and use the NZ COVID Tracer App to assist in contact tracing. It is possible to log manual entries and backdate them to include your recent movements. Businesses, it is simple and quick to get your own QR code to display.

As of 19 August 2020, all businesses have been required to display the government QR code poster for use with the NZ COVID Tracer App. Did you know you should also manage and archive QR codes from old events? This helps speed up contact tracing for the government. You can manage yours here.

It is also important to get the flu shot if you are eligible as this will take pressure off the health care system by avoiding you falling ill. For more information, and to see if you’re eligible for a free vaccination, visit

Visas and Travel

As at 22 June 2022, everyone travelling to New Zealand by air must complete a declaration, and receive a Traveller Pass, before they travel. This includes New Zealand citizens and residents, children and infants. Click here to read more and complete yours.

If you’re concerned about a visa status or travel to get home, visit:

Managed Isolation & Quarantine:

For current information on MIQ, visit

Ministry of Transport

Read about current restrictions on travel during the pandemic here.

The Treasury of New Zealand

The Treasury has released its new weekly COVID-19 economic dashboard. It includes real-time data on the economy. It is designed to aid independent analysis and give businesses a sense of the activity across different parts of the economy.

Support and Mental Wellbeing

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Workplace Support Wellbeing Services for ETNZ Members

Our assistance support program has been active since 2020, providing support in ensuring our mental wellbeing as we face these challenging times in the industry. ETNZ members have access to professional counselling services that will help deal with any emotional, financial, family-related, or work-related challenges. Think of it as roadside assistance for your wellbeing. This service is currently free to all members* for up to three sessions per year, and is available 8:30am – 5pm weekdays.

Change to Workplace Support 0800 443 445 Support Line – Access Hours 8:30am-5pm Weekdays

Access is simple: just call 0800 443 445, let them know that you are an ETNZ Member, and tell them your membership tier. We recommend you program this number into your phone, so it’s immediately ready should you need it, or if you need to pass it on to one of your colleagues who is also a member.

Reaching out and using the service is a strictly confidential and independent process. To help us monitor the effectiveness of the program, ETNZ will merely receive a number of the times the service is used.

As a society, we are notoriously poor at asking for help, and we have the dubious distinction of being the worst of all in this regard – highlighted by our historically higher rates of self-harm compared to other professions. We believe this initiative can provide some positive change.

The counselling support is very broad and comprehensive and provides the following services :

1. Therapeutic Counselling

  • Work Issues – i.e. pressure or stress, resilience, workplace change/challenges, communication, & career development
  • Personal issues – i.e. family, relationship, health, goals, self-care, grief or loss

2. Financial mentoring

  • i.e. tackling debt, understanding Kiwisaver, setting financial goals, making a budget, saving and investing, plans for retirement

3. Career direction

  • i.e. work/life balance, career coaching and advice, options on moving upwards/sideways/externally or reducing hours, career training and advancement

All you need to do is call 0800 443 445, let them know that you are an ETNZ Member, and tell them your membership tier. You can then discuss what your needs are and what type of service is best for you.

*This includes tiers Coal, Bronze, Silver, Gold, Platinum, and Life.

This information can also be found on our Supplier Discounts page.

Music Helps

Music Helps has a page on support options here:

COVID-19 support page 

It shares more links to Government information as well as their services:

Getting Through Together

A new Government campaign has been launched to share ways to help us cope with the stress of COVID-19 and isolation.

Visit the page to find out more.

The Mental Health Foundation

The Mental Health Foundation have a page called Getting Through Together for COVID-19 support.

They have tips to help get through this time, helplines to call, and resources for Workplace Wellbeing during COVID-19.

MBIE – Mental Health & Wellbeing Support for Businesses

There is a page of resources for businesses, including minimising stress, spotting burnout warning signs, building a policy for your business on Health & Wellbeing, and resources for free advice & support.

There is also a page dedicated to “Talking with your team about uncertain times”. Here you’ll find tips and support around how to have difficult conversations with your staff & colleagues.

There is a page on Resilience Tips for Small Business Owners, this contains mental wellbeing tips tailored for small business owners and sole traders.

Unite Against COVID-19 Website – Mental Wellbeing

The Government COVID-19 website has a page dedicated to mental wellbeing.

This includes ways to look after yourself and where to find help.

Professional Development Opportunities

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ETNZ has Awarded 100x COVID-19 Scholarships for the NZ Certificate in Entertainment and Event Operations (Level 3)

Read more here for information on total numbers of participants, workshops, etc. following completion of the workshop tour. 

Read more here about the Scholarship and associated ETNZ Workshops around NZ. 

Read the original Scholarship announcement here.

To learn more about the Skills Active Qualifications, visit our Training Page.

Tertiary Education Commission (TEC) – Targeted Training Apprenticeships Fund

The TEC has announced that the TTAF will cover fees from 1 July 2020 until 31 December 2022 and will be paid directly to Tertiary Education Organisations (TEOs) by the TEC. This will enable TEOs to provide education and training without fees to learners.

Read more on the initial release here.

Study in the following areas is covered by the Fund:

  • All apprenticeships (This includes the Entertainment & Event Technology Level 4 Qualification offered by Skills Active.)
  • Level 3-7 sub-degree programmes in targeted areas delivered by tertiary providers
  • Industry training, outside of apprenticeships, in targeted areas.

To learn more about the Skills Active Entertainment & Event Qualifications, visit our ETNZ Training Page.

Visit the TEC Website to learn more about the targeted areas & FAQs.

Apprenticeship Support Programme – Subsidies to Employers for Apprentices

The Apprenticeship Support Programme is a cross-agency government response implemented in August 2020 to help employers retain and bring on new apprentices, including Mana in Mahi participants, while dealing with the effects of COVID-19.

Many of you will remember Prime Minister Ardern discussing Mana in Mahi in relation to our industry during her address at our last ETNZ Conference.

The Apprenticeship Support Programme includes various programmes/schemes offering subsidies to employers for their apprentices. One of these is called Apprenticeship Boost; not only can it be paid to employers, but the funds can support the self-employed/contractors.

Apprenticeship Boost can pay for an apprentice who is self-employed if they’re employed or contracted by you. You need to apply for your apprentice, and you need to have a training agreement between yourself, your apprentice and your TEC approved transitional ITO or provider. Other eligibility criteria applies. Apprenticeship Boost has been extended until the end of December 2023. The payment rate for first year apprentices will change to $500 a month from 5 August 2022. Read full details at the link above.

Further support is available in the form of the Flexi-Wage Subsidy. This is for helping businesses hire staff and getting them the skills needed to do the job. There’s a wage contribution, as well as training and ongoing support if it’s needed. – Employment, Education, & Training brings together information from across government to support Employment, Education, and Training.

Skills Active Aotearoa – Financial Help for Trainees & Workplaces

To support our workplaces, many of whom are facing significant hardship amidst the pandemic, Skills Active does have financial help available to support qualifications. Read more here.

The ETNZ Selecon Scholarship – For ETNZ Financial Members who are NZ Citizens or Residents

The Selecon Scholarship can be used to help fund professional develop opportunities. You can find the criteria, time frames, and application on our website under the resources tab at the top of the page.