Arts Northern Rivers' Open Letter to the Minister
Arts Northern Rivers have prepared a letter to the Minister for Communications, Cyber Safety and the Arts on behalf of concerned Northern Rivers artists and arts workers.
The letter was prepared in response to a gathering late last year where members from our region expressed their deep concerns towards the Federal Government’s decision to abolish the Department of Communications and the Arts. The group voiced their concern that this move sends the wrong message to the industry and the nation, and felt that it was reflective of this government’s lack of support for the sector.
“At the meeting there was a visceral reaction to this decision – one which reflected the deep hurt and frustration that comes when your dedicated career in the arts is treated in such a diminished way”.
The letter is being sent to the Minister and released to the media as the new mega Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications comes into effect on February 1st and the Department of Communications and the Arts is erased.
The group of artists and arts workers highlighted the fact that the arts sector has endured significant disruption over the last 6 years under the LNP Government. The disruptions particularly included the removal of funds from the Australia Council which has directly impacted the small and medium arts sectors, both considered the ‘engine room’ of the arts industry.
The group also expressed its concern that the abolition of the Department of Communications and the Arts was undertaken without consultation with the sector and that it could be seen as a signal that further cuts are likely.
Image: Northern Rivers Artists and Arts Workers Gather at NORPA for ‘Action For The Arts’ | Photograph by Peter Wood