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Peabody Essex Museum to lay off 15% of staff

The Peabody Museum Essex announcement As of Wednesday, June 17, 15% of its staff in all departments (38 of 260) were made redundant, effective immediately, and all employees earning more than $ 110,000 suffered pay cuts ranging from 10 to 25%. These are the first cuts the museum has made since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in March.

“We have been able to maintain our staff level at full, without leave or layoffs, for the past four months while the museum is shutting down, but at this point it’s no longer viable,” said Brian Kennedy, director and CEO of PEM, in a statement.

PEM closed to the public on March 12 and continued to pay its part-time and full-time workers through endowment income and available cash. The museum also received a loan under the Federal Paycheck Protection Program, which allowed PEM to retain all of its staff for an additional eight weeks. Even with this additional support, the organization anticipates a reduction in its operating budget from $ 36 million in 2020 to $ 30 million in 2021.

“The museum will suffer a loss of revenue of $ 6 million this year due to the COVID-19 public health crisis and staff cuts were needed to ensure the stability and sustainability of the 221 year old organization.” , said Nathalie Apchin, CFO of PEM. declaration.

The museum has also suspended all construction and landscaping projects and canceled several public programming events and loaner exhibits this spring in an effort to further contain spending. While PEM has yet to announce a reopening date, its summer exhibition, “Made It: The Women Who Revolutionized Fashion”, has been postponed from November 21, 2020 to March 16, 2021.