13 June 2020

The Arts have been such a great source of emotional support for many during the lockdown, from Netflix binges to online theatre and music. However, the  joy of returning to Level 1 has been somewhat tempered by the cold reality of what Auckland’s arts sector will soon be facing. Auckland Council has been an avid supporter of the Arts, but the adoption of its Emergency Budget for 2020/21 will have direct ramifications on how arts and culture will be presented, performed and experienced in the city. Cuts include: public art spending reduced by 70%; significantly scaled back programmes at community centres, galleries and libraries; and fewer arts, culture and events grants owing to a reduction in activity (which is because of COVID-19. Catch 22.). If this budget is approved as is, many organisations will be affected, and some won’t survive without Council support. We ask you to stand with the Arts by responding to Auckland Council's feedback survey before 19 June 2020. 
The first three questions ask your opinion on key topics, such as a rate rise,  with the fourth giving an opportunity to voice your support for anything you feel passionate about. All are optional, so you can skip straight to Q.4. You might simply say “Please don’t forget to support the Arts!”, or wish to talk about the great economic benefits they bring, or their value in increasing the vibrancy of Auckland city,  especially when times are tough. Or whatever you feel inspired to voice. In summary, it’s as easy as clicking on this link to start. Thank you.

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