The New England Aquarium announced a series of budget cuts to preserve resources it believes will help the waterfront institution survive the shutdown caused by the COVID-19 outbreak.
“This was a heartbreaking decision, as it included staff layoffs and furloughs, and every member of our team is fiercely committed to the Aquarium and its mission,” said Aquarium President and CEO Vikki Spruill, in a message to supporters. “The goal of these reductions was to pare down considerably while retaining enough staff to carry on our mission and rebuild when the day comes that we can reopen,” she added.
The Aquarium has been closed to the public since March 13th. Ticket sales and events cover 80% of the aquarium’s expenses including care of the 20,000 animals as well as its programs that support ocean science and conservation. The non-profit has launched the Mission Forward Fund for charitable donations to help sustain its work during the crisis.
While the aquarium’s doors are closed, daily presentations are being made virtually on Facebook every day at 11am. These are also available for viewing on YouTube and its website at neaq.org/visit/at-home-events-and-activities.