MEDIA RELEASE: Arts policy forum, Melbourne

Labor today met with members of the creative sector in Melbourne as part of it’s ongoing engagement with the Australian arts community.

We met with independent artists and small to medium sized arts organisations to hear how to adapt the key challenges facing those in the arts sector into our policy.

Attendees today included representatives from the performing arts, visual arts as well as musicians, writers and  creative business incubators.

Meeting with this great cross section of the arts community is part of artists having a voice in our policy development process.

Consultations like today ensure that local artists are heard, and are empowered to share their experiences of the sector. It is only by putting the artists at the centre of policy and policy development that we can effectively support this vital sector.

Australian stories are told through the arts and this Government needs to understand that by neglecting the arts we are losing the ability to tell our national story.

Labor understands that the arts and creative industries are central to our lives as Australians and contribute to our social, cultural and economic life. The arts are about Australian ideas and stories.  

A lively arts sector is also important to our economy. Growing our arts and creative industries generates jobs and keeps young and innovative Australians here at home using the skills.

Only last week the Australia Council released its latest National Arts Participation survey (its third) and it confirms the essential role the arts play in daily life as well as their reflection of Australia’s diversity and contribution to a healthy and inclusive public life. The survey reveals that Australians love arts and culture - 97% of Australians surveyed are listening to music in 2016, 79% of us love reading for pleasure and 81% are engaged with culture online.



Tony Burke