The Bayou City’s workforce and arts and culture community took another hit this morning when the Houston Museum of Natural Science announced a round of furloughs and salary reductions.

According to the news release, the museum has furloughed 70 percent of its staff, or 337 employees, while the remaining 144 employees have taken a salary reduction of at least 15 percent. The news comes less than a month after Houston’s Museum District closed its doors due to the novel coronavirus. The release notes that those who have been furloughed will remain eligible for health insurance and benefits until May 31.

"Our goal is to emerge from this crisis stronger than ever, and to re-assemble our world-class team, all of whom are part of the HMNS family," HMNS President Joel A. Bartsch said in the statement. "Their skills, passion, knowledge and commitment built HMNS, and it is our firm belief that we will soon be able to welcome them back—along with our members and visitors—to the Houston Museum of Natural Science in the very near future."

The museum is currently slated to reopen on May 1.

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