This morning, the National Campaign for the Arts (NCFA) had a very open and constructive meeting with Minister Catherine Martin, Department of Media, Tourism, Arts, Culture, Sport and the Gaeltacht, Minister Stephen Donnelly, Department of Health, Dr Ronan Glynn, Acting Chief Medical Officer, and their officials, along with Arts Council Director Maureen Kennelly. Their participation in the meeting demonstrates that the arts and live events sector are very much part of their discussions in the context of the overall management of COVID-19.
We received reassurance from both Minister Martin and Minister Donnelly that the concerns and challenges of the arts, culture and live events sector are and will continue to be heard at Cabinet and a guarantee that expert input from the sector will inform long term decision making regarding live arts experiences and live events. Both Ministers also committed to ensuring that communications between the Departments, the Arts Council and the sector would be further strengthened.
Arising out of today’s meeting, NCFA welcomes the invitation to contribute to the Government Roadmap to ensure that the arts, culture and live events sector will be part of the long-term strategy for living with COVID-19. We now look forward to meeting with officials from the Department of Media, Tourism, Arts, Culture, Sport and the Gaeltacht later this week to input into the next phase of measures for the sector with regards to live arts experiences and events after September 13.
We are greatly heartened by Acting Chief Medical Officer Ronan Glynn’s comments today that arts and culture have a “phenomenally important role to play in keeping us together as a nation”, echoed in similar comments from Minister Stephen Donnelly.
We believe this is a positive step forward in ensuring that the expertise within Ireland’s arts and live events sector will be recognised and welcomed by Government.
NCFA Steering Committee.