Sunrise stars could face huge pay cuts amid pandemic

·Features and Health Editor
·2-min read

Sunrise stars could be among a host of Channel Seven presenters facing a pay cut, as the network looks for ways to get through the ongoing economic crisis as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

The network has been forced to reduce the salaries of some of its biggest stars by 20 per cent, according to a report by The Sydney Morning Herald.

Sunrise hosts Samantha Armytage and David Koch
Sam and David are two of the highest-paid presenters on the network. Photo: Channel Seven

Seven News boss Craig McPherson, who looks after Sunrise hosts Samantha Armytage and David 'Kochie' Koch, confirmed the cuts without revealing any specific names, but added “everyone is united and doing what they can to get through this”.

“I spoke to all my presenters personally and everyone was very understanding of the situation and handled it with great grace and class,” Craig told the publication.

Sam and Kochie are two of the highest-paid presenters on the network, and reportedly earned $500,000 and $1,000,000 respectively in 2019.

Former Today newsreader Tracy Vo also broke her silence last week after leaving the rival breakfast program.

Tracy made the decision to leave Today and return to Nine News Perth in order to be closer to her family during the coronavirus pandemic.

She shared a little public service announcement by posting a photo of herself in a T-shirt emblazoned with the words "stay home".

She posed with a ukulele in the shot and wrote, "Stay home... A sparkly PSA brought to you by @empirerose_... Stay safe & well friends... and yep getting a lot of ukulele jams in."

Today show Tracy Vo
Tracy left Today to return to Perth. Photo: Channel Nine

The coronavirus outbreak has hit the Aussie entertainment industry hard.

On Friday, The Wiggles revealed the heartbreaking decision the group was forced to lay-off their touring staff after having to cancel their upcoming tour.

Speaking with Perth Now, Blue Wiggle Anthony Field revealed, “We've had to stand down our beautiful cast”.

That included the group’s dancers, merchandise sales team, truck drivers, and sound crew.

It was the arts industry in Australia overall that was one of the first to be hit by the pandemic due to the large crowds of people that have to work in such close proximity.

Many of those people have been unable to work since February with large film productions including Marvel's Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings being forced to shut down filming in Sydney.

With many of these people working in the arts being short-term contract workers, they are finding themselves ineligible for job keeper and jobseeker payments.

According to The Guardian, it's estimated that 1.1 million casuals will miss out on the payments.

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