An ambitious solidarity project: Smart launches the Corona Plan

05/04/2020 - Xenia Kopf

Liebe Smart Community!

Fast 100.000 Freelancer*innen – Künstler*innen Kreative und Neue Selbständige – in neun europäischen Ländern arbeiten mit Smart, die meisten davon in Belgien und Frankreich. Hier in Österreich hat Smart über 1.000 User*innen. Die allermeisten von ihnen trifft die aktuelle Krise hart. Einige Staaten, auch Österreich, haben Notfallfonds eingerichtet und unterstützende Maßnahmen getroffen, anderswo fehlt beides. Insgesamt besteht die Gefahr, dass genau diejenigen mit kurzfristig wechselnden, projektbezogenen Beschäftigungsverhältnissen, pendelnd zwischen Anstellungen und Selbstständigkeit, durch alle Antragsraster fallen.

Als Netzwerk solidarökonomischer, nicht profitorientierter Cooperativen in Europa möchte Smart gerade in der Zeit der Krise ein gemeinsames solidarisches Dach bilden und versuchen, so umfassend und soweit möglich, Stabilität, Planbarkeit und Sicherheit in die Vielfalt und Komplexität der Lebens- und Arbeitsverhältnisse derjenigen zu bringen, die aktuell durch Projektausfälle, Vertragsannullierungen und Verschiebungen mit krisenbedingten Einkommensverlusten konfrontiert sind.

Diese gemeinsame Aussendung ist der Startpunkt für die Arbeit an einem über die nationalen Grenzen hinausgehenden gemeinsamen Plan für ein solidarisches Handeln – und möchte mit dieser gemeinsamen Aussendung gleichzeitig darauf aufmerksam machen, wie Viele es gibt, die als Einzelkämpfer*innen mit komplexen Beschäftigungsverhältnissen derzeit in vielen Ländern nicht von Unterstützungen aufgefangen werden.

An ambitious solidarity project: Smart launches the Corona Plan

The following text is a shared statement by Smart in Europe.

Throughout Europe, Smart has noted a decrease in the activity of its members by 10% in February, and it’s projected to decrease by 75% in April. This equates to over 90,000 working days lost by several thousand workers across the Smart community. Faced with a crisis of an unprecedented size and nature, Smart wants to launch an ambitious solidarity system: the Corona Plan intends to offer a response to members’ canceled activities caused by the crisis (support measures) as well as actions to promote a post‐crisis recovery (recovery measures) so that members have the assets to re‐establish their activities.

Support Measures

Smart is looking at ways to compensate members who have had activities canceled due to the Covid‐19 emergency. This applies to activities managed by Smart which have been canceled after a contract has been signed and where you can show evidence that a contract was about to be signed. Smart is also looking at ways to compensate members for business expenses and other costs connected to canceled activities.

Smart is also planning additional help for members living in the areas most affected by the pandemic.

Smart has started assessing the impact on members and the extent and nature of support measures by the respective governments in order to define Smart’s response and to draw attention to possible gaps in public measures. Smart will inform its members about support measures offered by national governments and will work with partners to lobby authorities at a local, national and European level to make sure that everyone is taken into account in policymaking. Nobody should be forgotten.

Recovery Measures

Smart also intends to offer support for the recovery of economic activities as soon as the situation will start improving and will consist of:

  • Efforts to resume activities through financing mechanisms (investment in equipment, marketing, etc.)
  • Advice and training for members

Guiding Principles

Smart will do its best to continue facilitating forms of mutual assistance and help between members.

The Corona Plan will include possibilities for strengthening collaboration with public and private institutions, clients and other partners to share resources and knowledge.

Smart intends to engage in a broad collective reflection on new economic, commercial and redistributive models, as well as on a form of worker protection that goes beyond their contractual framework. Together, we can seize this opportunity to come up with solutions and concrete policies inspired by cooperation and solidarity.

We anticipate that the scope of these measures shall be limited by both our own resources and those of other actors, and the magnitude of the crisis. Smart will keep you updated on the details of the plan’s implementation, calling upon all members, partners, clients, organizations and people interested in the Smart ecosystem to follow the development of the Corona Plan on the blog kronik.smart.coop.

Stay home. Save people. Protect workers.
Together, we are stronger.

Download the joint statement

Stay home, Save people, Protect Workers. Smart