Dublin South-West has a thriving and resilient arts scene. Through venues like The Civic Theatre, RUA RED, South Dublin Arts Centre and South Dublin County libraries as well as a myriad of community arts groups including Tallaght Community Arts, AltEnts, Create School and many others, both local and wider community are given the opportunity to witness and experience world-class theatre, dance, music, literature and visual arts.
However, over the last few years, things have become hugely strained with all local Arts Council annually funded organisations receiving large cuts, and in the case of RUA RED South Dublin Arts Centre, a total absence of annual funding. As Dublin South West has some of the most economically deprived areas in the county, these cuts have led to an unfortunate reduction in the amount of free or reduced price programming available which are much needed in an area this size.
This continuing trend of cuts is having a knock on effect on the groups and organisations operating in the area, and should it continue, will be detrimental for the arts in my constituency. We intend on continuing to work with local government to lobby the Arts Council on our behalf as well as working together to create a strong unit in South Dublin. In the run up to the Budget and the 2014 Local Elections, it will be essential for all of us to lobby both national and local representatives as well as funders to stop the cuts and to really show their support for the arts.
Rebecca Fitzpatrick, NCFA Constituency Co-ordinator, Dublin South –West.