COVID-19 : in just one week 545 companies have already joined

«We cannot allow ourselves to continue in inaction and pastry: not in our municipalities, not in our island, not in our community, not in our country ». This is the cry of the Balearic hospitality industry, which in just over a week since it started its ‘SOS Tourism’ campaign has garnered more than fifty supporters.

SOS Tourism is made up of a group of people who are part of Balearic society and its productive fabric that we want our message to be heard loud and clear.

Collectively, we must have responsible behaviors to help overcome the health situation and not generate risk situations, but administrations must also do their part and manage diligently and swiftly to address the consequences of the pandemic in its health, economic and Social.

Representatives of trade associations of They are Servera, Cala Ratjada, Artà, sa Coma or s’Illot read the manifesto of the beginning of the initiatives on February 12, among them the hotel company Inés Batle, one of the promoters of the initiative, and Rubén García, Susana de Juan, Margalida Riutort, Toni Miquel Amorós, Mariella Violatto and Jésica Porcell. Today there are already more than 500 hospitality establishments and associations that have joined them to defend the worst hit sector in the region, since most of its GDP depends on tourism.

From the organization of the campaign they have asked the hoteliers the visibility of the same through posters in the establishments or of initiatives such as protest marches and walks.

The success of the campaign already shows the number of people and establishments that have joined. From his Twitter account he recently assured that «Only a week has passed and we are already 545 in! Entrepreneurs and workers from different sectors of the #IslasBaleares unite and raise our voices.In addition, we are already more than 32,600 followers on social networks! »

This is the full manifesto of SOS Turismo:

«SOS Tourism is a social and business movementIt is born from the transversal claim of all those involved in the tourism value chain.

The global pandemic caused by the coronavirus has had, and continues to have, dramatic consequences on the health of thousands of people. The health crisis has also resulted in a global economic crisis with an unprecedented impact.

In the Balearic archipelago it has caused a fall in GDP of more than 25%, 5 times greater than that suffered in the previous crisis in 2009. Practically all economic activity is paralyzed and tourist activity is closed tightly and bolt, resisting as best it can by injecting it with intermittent puffs of oxygen that, today, are absolutely insufficient and lead us to suffocation.

We live this situation in a very distressing way, due to its excessive duration, due to the application of erratic measures and because our battered economy and companies, also seriously ill, are not treated, but rather persistent deafness of administrations, it leads us, in the best of cases, to palliative care.

Fruit of this desperate situation A feeling of abandonment and powerlessness has been generated among workers and businessmen that we not only see the possibility of restarting tourism disappear, but also how our companies, our heritage, our jobs are in danger …

This collective feeling emerges and becomes visible with the SOS Tourism movement, a cry for help released to all administrations of all skill levels.

For months, the employers’ associations and groups have been working on formulating proposals to keep the business fabric alive and avoid job destruction. In response, temporary protection measures were articulated that have helped but that, given the dimensions of what we are experiencing and what is coming, we could say that they will remain in gestures.

What is required in economic matters is closely correlated with what health management also requires: effective emergency plans as a matter of urgency. Those of us who support the social and business protest movement SOS Turismo, we propose to all competent administrations and people with government responsibility the following requests:

1. Take over immediately that a crisis of this magnitude requires unity, clear lines of action, transparency, collegiate decisions and prioritize measures with the objectives of controlling the pandemic and recovering the economy so as not to deepen the social crisis.

two. Prioritize health: Special attention must be paid to the groups of health and care workers who are on the front line fighting to save lives, physically and emotionally exhausted and, in many cases, lacking the human and material resources to deal with this situation.

We demand a health policy that will not stumble, that it makes use of all possible resources, both public and private, that they continue to carry out mass screening of the population and that the tracing is efficient to cut chains of infections.

In addition, we urge you to communicate the vaccination plan to be developed in the Balearic Islands and announce which groups are going to be vaccinated after people considered at risk and vulnerable, we demand the delivery of more doses of vaccines so that an intensive campaign is carried out to immunize 70% of the population before the summer.

Negotiators of the Spanish Government in the European Union must be urged to defend the creation of a system that accredits vaccination and is recognized between countries in order to facilitate mobility. As well as having reinforced passenger access control points with the pertinent diagnostic tests as long as its presentation in ports and airports is required.

3. Draw up the action plans between the Govern of the Balearic Islands, the business sectors, social agents and renowned experts to adequately move through the phases of resistance, recovery and reorientation.

Unfortunately, we have not yet managed to overcome the first phase and the resources of the companies are already at the limit, having to face a huge tax burden and without the possibility of generating income due to the lack of activity.

Let us remember that in many cases companies have been closed since October 2019.

We have been navigating between ERTES, PCR, protocols, mobility restrictions, capacity reduction, temporary closings, timid openings, and total closures. Without a doubt, with this panorama, the news of the vaccines gave us all hope, but the management we see and the weakness of the European Union vis-à-vis pharmaceutical companies he has quickly dislodged us from this illusion.

The European Union must be more diligent, more forceful and more effective in the authorization of vaccines, with all the necessary guarantees, and manage much more voluminous deliveries in a short space of time to respond to what European citizens are demanding: security health and protection against viruses.

4. Articulate a rescue plan of the tourism sector with active participation of all administrations. The objective must be to safeguard companies and employment while it is not feasible to reactivate the economy and we are waiting for the aforementioned measures to be implemented. We need direct aid and a substantial reduction in tax and tax burdens.

Our source markets They are also in a compromised situation at the health level and tourist demand is non-existent, the situation of tour operators is delicate, air connectivity fluctuates downwards with forecasts of less than 50% of activity, possible travel restrictions that do not considered essential keeps us on edge.

All this makes us see that, if there are not very substantial changes, this 2021 season will be extremely difficult and complex, so it is imperative to work in different ways.

On the one hand, it is necessary to use all the tools and develop all the necessary policies to favor the right conditions, in addition to generating the necessary alliances, to generate opportunities for reactivation.

A powerful message, backed by facts, must be launched towards the source markets, generating confidence and showing them that we are working to welcome them again by offering a safe destination that provides the tourist experience expected of the Balearic Islands.

On the other hand, knowing that the possible recovery will be partial and progressive, protection mechanisms must be maintained and flexibility provided to avoid the destruction of the business fabric and the workforce.

Given the critical situation that we are going through, whatever the size of our companies, the activity they are engaged in or the number of people they employ, we are certain that there will be reduced activity in this year 2021 if there are no drastic changes.

Considering the urgency of the application of the economic and health rescue measures, the promoters of SOS Tourism, sympathetic workers, entrepreneurs and citizens For this cause, we demand a call to action from each and every one of the competent administrations.

We will use all the means at our disposal so that this message of help is not erased from the retina of our leaders and we will keep alive the heartbeat of the people who dedicate ourselves to tourism until our requests are heard and effective and fast mechanisms are articulated to achieve all the goals we set.

We cannot allow ourselves to continue in inaction and in pastry: neither in our municipalities, nor on our island, not in our community, not in our country. We must face this major challenge with efforts and draft measures and we must do it Now! Join SOS Turismo, make yourself visible and make yourself heard! ».