- 19 May 16
The National Campaign for the Arts meets with Minister Heather Humphries to voice their concerns over Enda Kenny's comments in Washington DC
Following Taoiseach Enda Kenny's comments on his commitment to the arts, the National Campaign for the Arts held a meeting with Minister Heather Humphries today.
“I see little of more importance to the future of our country and our civilization than full recognition of the artist”. The Taoiseach said in a speech yesterday. Adding “When it comes to Ireland, I agree”.
His claims were met with slight suspicion, as the NCFA stated that "If he does agree, he must back his words up with actions, commitments and investment."
The NCFA met with the Minister for Arts to voice their concerns at the diminishing interest the government has shown the role the arts plays in society. They insisted that "greater investment, policy reform and a strong long-term vision for the arts" was needed.
However, they received "no solid commitment from Government to address the serious issues facing the sector." With the Minister unable to promise that her department would retain the additional €50 million that went into the Department for the 2016 Commemorations.
According to the NCFA the facts tell the true story of this government's commitment to the arts. "Ireland’s funding for the Arts places us at the bottom of the European league table. Council of Europe data shows that in 2012 Ireland spent just 0.11% of GDP on the Arts and Culture, compared to a European average of 0.6% of GDP."
“As an initial target we should aim to increase arts funding to half the European average," Chairperson of the National Campaign for the Arts Jo Mangan said. "We think that is a modest proposal by anyone’s standards.”