The ISACS network warmly welcomes the report from the Arts and Culture Recovery Taskforce and the recommendations within.
This report is wide ranging and addresses a number of key issues including notably the right for artists income to be protected. The proposed introduction of a pilot Universal Basic Income scheme for artists is particularly welcome in this regards, given that many of our artists potential to earn an income has been decimated due to COVID-19.
In addition, we are pleased to see the prioritisation of specialised wellbeing services for practitioners in the creative and cultural community and look forward to working together with the department towards same.
This together with structured supports to enable artists and arts organisations to build capacity through upskilling and professional development as well as the all important maintenance of physical practice so important for circus practitioners are vitally needed. One observation would be that in order for this to happen it is now critical that artists, creation centres and organisation can secure access to suitable insurance product for same. This was previously addressed within the Campaign for Arts as well as our own Pre Budget submission and must not be overlooked.
Finally, we are excited to see an acknowledgement of the role that Street Arts, Circus and Spectacle can play in making live art available to audiences once more. This was particularly highlighted in recommendation 9: Providing more outdoor public spaces for cultural events. We, in ISACS are looking forward to the opportunity to work together with Local Authorities, Creative Ireland, OPW and the National Parks and Wildlife Service towards developing multi-functional spaces to support cultural activity and safe public engagement, as well as advising on how best to support outdoor artists and outdoor arts creative practice. Cultural spaces are only as vibrant as the artists that inhabit them.