CDC: No Events Over 50 People

CDC
The CDC has recommended that no gatherings with 50 people or more take place for the next 8 weeks.

The weekend brought the news the meetings industry has been anticipating: The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has recommended that no gatherings with 50 people or more take place for the next 8 weeks.

This CDC announcement includes conferences, festivals, parades, concerts, sporting events, weddings and other types of assemblies.

“Large events and mass gatherings can contribute to the spread of COVID-19 in the United States via travelers who attend these events and introduce the virus to new communities,” the CDC said in its new guidelines.

In response, the Meetings Mean Business Coalition issued the following statement: As industry leaders who are driven by a responsibility to our clients, customers and employees, this is certainly not a directive we were hoping to see. However, it is one we intend to follow.

“We applaud the industry professionals who are managing as best they can through this difficult and unanticipated situation—including those who are going above and beyond to promote lenience, provide solutions and contribute in significant ways to their communities.”

According to a Global Business Travel Association survey, the global business travel sector is expected to take a revenue hit of about $820 billion, with China accounting for nearly half of the losses. This latest GBTA estimate is higher than its February forecast of $560 billion and will likely change again in the event of a shutdown of domestic flights in the United States, which Vice President Mike Pence described in a weekend press conference as being one of the latest measures under consideration to curb the pandemic.

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Barbara Scofidio is editor of Prevue and heads up the Visionary Summits, our exclusive conference series targeting senior-level meeting and incentive planners. In 25 years of covering the industry, her articles have spanned topics ranging from social media to strategic meetings management. She is currently the media liaison for FICP's Education Committee and was the first member of the media ever to be invited to sit on a committee by GBTA, where she spent three years on the Groups and Meetings Committee. She has also been an active member of Site, chairing its Crystal Awards committee and acting as a judge. A familiar face at industry events, Barbara often leads panel discussions or speaks on topics close to her heart, such as green meetings or how the industry can help combat human trafficking. She is also on the board of ECPAT USA, the human trafficking organization. Barbara is based outside Boston, in Groton, Mass.

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