Minister Catherine Martin publishes a progress report on the Arts and Culture Recovery Taskforce recommendations
From Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media

The Arts and Culture Recovery Taskforce published a report, ‘Life Worth Living’, in November 2020 which included ten recommendations to assist the recovery of the arts and culture sector post-pandemic.
In April 2021 the Minister established an Oversight Group tasked with appraising the recommendations set out in Life Worth Living report. This report from the Oversight Group identifies progress on the implementation of the recommendations made by the taskforce up to and including December 2021
The Minister for Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media, Catherine Martin TD, today (4 January 2022) welcomed the publication of a report from the Oversight Committee set up to appraise progress on the implementation of the recommendations made in the “Life Worth Living” Report from the Arts and Culture Recovery Taskforce.

It has been widely acknowledged that the impact of COVID-19 on the arts and culture sector has been more detrimental, and will last longer, than in nearly any other sector. Minister Martin established the Arts and Culture Recovery Taskforce in 2020 as a response to the pandemic, and to provide a platform for solution-focused recommendations for the recovery of the arts and culture sector.

The Oversight Group, tasked with appraising the level of implementation of the Taskforce recommendations, produced a progress report outlining the results of the last 12 months of work.

Minister Martin said:

When I met with the Taskforce in 2020, I was struck both by the members’ dedication and also the seriousness of the situation facing the arts and culture sector. I was under no illusions about the scale of the challenge and the many competing priorities facing Government. The dedication and determination that the Oversight Group has shown in progressing the Taskforce Report’s recommendations while remaining in the midst of a global pandemic gives confidence that the arts and culture sector can flourish post-pandemic.

I am delighted that we have been able to respond to many of the recommendations made by the Taskforce, with over 75% of the recommendations already implemented.”

In broad terms, the recommendations are divided under three themes of:

1. Ensuring Recovery.
2. Building Resilience.
3. Facing Forward.

75% of the ten Recommendations made have been implemented, 21% are in progress and 4% have been closed. The number one recommendation of the taskforce was the introduction of a basic income for the arts pilot scheme (BIA). €25m has been allocated to pilot the BIA in 2022 which is a key priority for Minister Martin. Significant work has been done to realise this as a practical and substantial support for the arts and cultural sector, with a stakeholder forum held on the 15th of December to inform key policy areas of the Scheme. The Basic Income for the Arts pilot scheme will be launched early in 2022.

Clare Duignan , Chair of the Arts and Culture Taskforce said:

The survival, recovery and sustainability of this sector is dependent on economic policy and decision-making in the short and long term. Taskforce members unanimously agreed that the establishment of a pilot basic income scheme in the arts, culture, audiovisual and live performance and events sector was our top priority. This scheme has the potential to be genuinely transformative in terms of the sustainability of the sector.

Regarding the Basic Income for the Arts, Minister Martin added:

I am determined to ensure that permanent damage is not done to the arts sector from the pandemic and that the Basic Income pilot scheme is part of this response to ensure the arts in Ireland come back stronger than ever.

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