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Apr 22, 2016

Joint statement on the prime role of culture and the arts in society

The European sectoral social partners represented by Pearle*-Live Performance Europe and EAEA - the European Arts and Entertainment Alliance which represents workers through the trade unions of actors, musicians and technicians affiliated to FIA, FIM and UNI-MEI -, have for many years discussed cultural policies, public funding and the impact of the economic crisis, at meetings of the European sectoral social dialogue, which are facilitated by the European Commission's DG Employment.

Having started in 2008 with an internal survey amongst social partners in the sector on the impact of the financial crisis which resulted in the ongoing austerity measures in Member States across Europe, the cuts in public finances for the performing arts and in particular the impact on employment was a recurrent theme on the work programme since 2008.

For the past years the sector has done its share and contributed to governmental initiatives to secure the countries' budgets, say the social partners. However, the measures taken, including reduced public funding for the arts, increase of VAT rates on culture in different Member States, the closure of a number of performing arts institutions and organisations resulting in loss of jobs, have an impact which is even far greater than for those immediately involved in the performing arts sector itself. It has impacted the entire society.

The Social partners present a wide vareity of measures which can be taken to boost and support the live performance sector and make clear recommendations to the EU and to the Member States.

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