Premiership side Harlequins have announced that they have asked all players, staff and coaches to agree to a 25% wage cut in response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
With the Premiership rugby season postponed, the club announced they have come to the decision as a result of the disruption caused to their regular income streams.
With no match-day revenue coming in, clubs all across the UK are feeling the strain of covering their expenses.
Earlier on Monday, Championship side Coventry warned that their future is now at serious risk as they face a significant six figure loss of income.
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And now Harlequins have confirmed that they will need to cut wages in order to ensure the financial viability of the club, with a statement from CEO Laurie Dalrymple noting that “unprecedented times call for challenging decisions.”
“The past few days have been turbulent, unnerving and challenging for us all,” the statement read.
“Rugby has for the moment rightly paused, but in times like these, the most important thing is staying healthy and safe with the welfare of families and communities of paramount importance.
? "The past few days have been turbulent, unnerving and challenging for us all."
— Harlequins ? (@Harlequins) March 23, 2020
“What is to come over the next few weeks and months across the globe is uncharted territory, but we must prepare for every eventuality. As it stands, both The Stoop and our training ground at Surrey Sports Park are shut to protect the health and welfare of our staff. We are not able to play rugby and most of our regular income streams have been disrupted following the postponement or cancellation of all of our rugby and non-rugby events.
“We need to ensure that we take action now to ensure the security of our staff and the financial viability of the Club. These are incredibly tough decisions in unprecedented times.
“Today, we have made the difficult decision to ask all our staff, players and coaches to support the Club through a 25% reduction of salary. We will look after our lowest earners and those facing financial difficulty.
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“This move hasn’t been taken lightly, but in order to protect jobs, the future of Harlequins and the excellent and committed people that resides within. Even with this important contribution, we will need all of our stakeholders to come together to help secure the Club’s future.
“In the coming days the focus of our Club will switch to supporting our local communities, doing our best to support those who need our help. Our social networks will be used to share health, fitness and welfare advice to help everyone through this difficult period – last week saw The Harlequins Foundation team launch free keep fit videos for example.
“We have an incredibly committed, dedicated and passionate workforce that prides itself on being Harlequins – giving their absolute all on and off the field to our Club. On behalf of our owners and the board, I want to take this moment to thank everyone at our Club for their incredible passion, support and sacrifice – from our players to our coaches, our maintenance staff, our community coaches our Foundation – everyone employed at Harlequins plays their part and has displayed so much humility in how they’ve embraced this difficult process. Likewise, to all our loyal and passionate supporters, we thank you more than ever for your backing at this time. A club is at its best when it comes together and acts as a community. Over the coming weeks and months, we will need to call upon everyone to get behind the Club to ensure its survival and enable it to flourish again.”
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