Advocacy Alert: Contact The White House About Establishing A National Vaccination Status Program

As we begin the new year, I want to encourage everyone to contact the White House to advocate for the administration to establish a national vaccination status program that can be adopted at the state, local, and even institutional level.

The omicron variant underscores the need for a secure and reliable system managed at the federal level that organizations and local governments can opt into. It needs to be user friendly and function as both a stand-alone verification solution and a platform performing arts venues can integrate into existing ticketing systems similar to the way TSA PreCheck currently functions.

Please feel free to use the following letter as-is or as a template to modify as you see fit.

The President
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue
Washington, DC 20500

Dear President Biden,

On the occasion of the second year of your first term, I hope you will consider supporting a secure and reliable national vaccination status program similar to what currently exists with the Transportation Security Administration’s PreCheck program and state-based solutions such as New York’s Excelsior Pass.

Establishing a national program that allows states, cities, and individual organizations and venues to opt-in when they decide to enact verifiable vaccination status to attend concert events is a crucial step toward regaining public trust as existing mitigation efforts continue to produce positive results.

Shifting this burden to individual arts and culture organizations is more than most can bear. As a result, they are compelled to make unnecessarily problematic decisions to artificially prolong closures or divert limited resources to creating inefficient verification procedures.

There will undoubtedly be resistance, but the rewards far outweigh the risks. To that end, the arts and culture sector needs your administration to encourage progress and lead the way into a new model capable of handling not only the COVID-19 pandemic but any similar public health epidemic we may face.

Most respectfully,
Drew McManus

About Drew McManus

"I hear that every time you show up to work with an orchestra, people get fired." Those were the first words out of an executive's mouth after her board chair introduced us. That executive is now a dear colleague and friend but the day that consulting contract began with her orchestra, she was convinced I was a hatchet-man brought in by the board to clean house.

I understand where the trepidation comes from as a great deal of my consulting and technology provider work for arts organizations involves due diligence, separating fact from fiction, interpreting spin, as well as performance review and oversight. So yes, sometimes that work results in one or two individuals "aggressively embracing career change" but far more often than not, it reinforces and clarifies exactly what works and why.

In short, it doesn't matter if you know where all the bodies are buried if you can't keep your own clients out of the ground, and I'm fortunate enough to say that for more than 15 years, I've done exactly that for groups of all budget size from Qatar to Kathmandu.

For fun, I write a daily blog about the orchestra business, provide a platform for arts insiders to speak their mind, keep track of what people in this business get paid, help write a satirical cartoon about orchestra life, hack the arts, and love a good coffee drink.

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