The Booksellers Association of the United Kingdom & Ireland Limited

BA, Bookselling and Coronavirus: Bookseller Hardship Fund, Advice on Employment Law

26/03/2020
Dear BA Members,
 
We hope you are keeping well and that you and your staff and families are staying healthy.

We have two important bits of information for you today.
  
Croner Business Support For BA Members
 
Don’t forget the BA’s FREE Business Support Helpline – you can also take a look at Croner’s latest help and advice on employment law and COVID-19 information here as a BA member - https://clients.croner.co.uk/covid-19-partner-toolkit/
 
Bookseller Hardship Fund – Apply Now
 
We are really pleased to let you know that the Booksellers Hardship Fund, administered on behalf of the trade by the Book Trade Charity, BTBS, is now a joint initiative between the BA, PRH (and other publishers, we hope) and the organisers of the GoFundMe fundraiser for booksellers which went live on Twitter this week.  The Fund is targetted at booksellers affected by Covid-19 and is now aiming, via the collaboration between Penguin Random House UK and the BA, to increase its funding target to £100,000.
 
Organisers Gayle Lazda, Zeljka Marosevic and Kishani Widyaratna launched the initiative to raise £10,000 last week, and has already raised over £7,000 of its target, thanks to generous donations from individuals across the book trade as well as authors, such as Candice Carty-Williams, Adam Kay, Jessie Burton, Reni Eddo-Lodge, Patrick Ness, David Nicholls, Kit de Waal, Sophie Mackintosh, Daisy Johnson, and others.
 
As you will know, the BA had already pledged £30,000 to The Book Trade Charity for bookseller hardship, and we will now contribute that funding to this project, in order to coordinate and focus all resources in the place that can best deliver the help booksellers need.  PRH will match every contribution £1 for £1, up to £50,000 – including matching all donations made to the fund so far.
 
The funds are available to anyone who works in a bookshop in the UK or Ireland, who finds themselves in hardship as a result of the impact of Covid-19. This includes traditional ‘booksellers’ as well as staff working behind the scenes in a bookshop.
 
The Book Trade Charity will administer all grants for people based in the UK on a case by case basis, and we are exploring how this might be administered in Ireland (the Book Trade Charity is limited to the UK by its charitable aims).
 
Tom Weldon, CEO of Penguin Random House UK, said, ‘In this strange and testing time we need to connect as an industry to support our publishing ecosystem. Bookshops and booksellers are the lifeblood of our industry, and at the heart of local communities across the UK and Ireland. We hope our contribution to this fundraiser helps give them the support they need in the coming weeks and months.’
 
Meryl Halls, Managing Director of the BA, said, ‘We are heartened by the bubbling up of support for booksellers from across the trade, and really pleased to be able to work with PRH and with Gayle, Zeljka and Kishani to collaborate on making sure we are maximizing the money being collected to help booksellers in hardship. This crisis is testing all our norms and ethical values, and it is really humbling to see this outpouring of support and love for booksellers.  We thank PRH, the crowdfunders and the Book Trade Charity on behalf of all our members, and the BA.  And we look forward to delivering real help to those who need it most.’
 
Donations can be made via the Go Fund Me page here: https://www.gofundme.com/f/fundraiser-booksellers-covid-19 - where you can also find details on how to apply.  Or you can email info@btbs.org to start that ball rolling.

Established in 1837, the Book Trade Charity provides confidential care and support to former, current and future book trade people in need with grants and housing. They provide a wide range of support through grants for re-training, living with a disability, medical need and other circumstances brought about by redundancy, sickness or other life events. They rely on the generosity of the book trade, the general public and individuals to provide vital funding. Learn more at http://www.btbs.org/
 
 
A reminder that we're adding all updates and resources on the current situtaion to this page:https://booksellers.org.uk/industryinfo/industryinfo/Coronavirus-Resources-for-Booksellers

Do keep in touch and take good care of each other. 

- Booksellers Association