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Dear ,

Easter is fast approaching, as are the local council and European elections.  With just over five weeks to go, canvassing has started in earnest.  So too has our campaign.

Our strategy for action

We have just completed our strategy entitled Republic of Culture that sets out plainly and simply what we are trying to do now and in the next few years. As part of the plan, it outlines our ask for both the local and European elections and describes how you can add your voice to make a difference. You can read it here.

Local elections: €1 for the arts

Our local election campaign demands that all local election candidates make a public commitment to ensuring local authority arts investment is at least €1 per person per week (matching current state per capita investment in the arts) by the next local elections in 2019.

We want to stabilise funding for the arts at a local level and ensure that arts continue to be supported.  Why? Because the arts:

- build pride, promote local interest and a sense of place
- help create diverse, tolerant, healthy, creative communities
- positively impact on social cohesion, economic regeneration and drive tourism.

So tell or email your local election candidate with these details of what we’re looking for and why.  Ask them to pledge their commitment.

We’ve been inspired by what our colleagues in the UK are doing in this regard.  See here.

European Elections: our cultural rights

The European Parliament may seem quite distant from our day-to-day lives here in Ireland but EU legislation has an impact on up to 80% of national legislation. It’s time to consider and influence what the EP can do for us as citizens.  And to tell our MEPs that we want arts and culture to be at the heart of the European project.

Our call in the European elections is for the EP to improve access to the arts for all citizens and safeguard our cultural rights, as enshrined in the International Covenant of Economic Social and Cultural Rights. We want MEPs to

- Fight to place the role of culture, arts and citizenship higher up the Europe 2020 agenda
- Publicly support the “Creative Europe” Framework, the EU’s new programme for the cultural and creative sectors 2014-2020.

Read more about this in Claire Power’s letter from Brussels and check out Culture Action Europe.

Useful election links

Check if you are registered to vote

Local election candidates – personal blog

MEP Candidates and their European Parliamentary Party affiliations 

Profiles of the European Parliamentary Parties

Arts Council Strategy Review

The Arts Council is currently undertaking a review of how they address their remit. They are conducting meetings and inviting people to make a submission to the steering group.  You can do so online here. We encourage you to make a submission and accentuate the need for the Arts Council to:

- play a leading role in the development of a cogent cultural policy
- fearlessly advocate for the arts
- commit to a programme of research


We are currently finalising the report on the four national arts policy discussions, Colloquia held over the last year.  It will be published on the NCFA website soon. The report (in full and summary versions) captures the essence of contributions at each of the Colloquia and provides robust confirmation of the need and appetite for evidence-based policy-making on the arts and culture in Ireland.

And finally ...

Last, but certainly not least, we need your help.  We have an opportunity to conduct a piece of research to substantiate our call to stabilise local authority funding. To do so we need to raise €1000. Can you spare a tenner? Or stretch to €50? If so, donate now…


Best wishes,

Valerie Connor