Will the Prime Minister’s targeted $250 million package of funding to support cultural and creative projects and initiatives save the industry?
The arts funding is aimed at kick starting the sector with funding preferencing commercial initiatives that generate jobs and are expected to have a positive economic impact. That is, this is an economic package as opposed to creative or cultural funding.
Outside of the funding package, SupportAct received $10m in funding for COVID-19 crisis relief grants. Crisis funding is accessible to:
musicians, crew and music workers who are unable to access Government benefits due to eligibility or other issues
music workers who have been able to access Government benefits but are still facing financial hardship; and to
those who are suffering financial hardship as a result of injury, ill-health or a mental health issue that is managed through a current Mental Health plan.
To be eligible, you will need to be a musician, crew or music worker, who:
is an Australian citizen, permanent resident or have a valid working visa
can prove they been working in the music industry for three years
can provide names and details of two professional referees
have household expenses greater than household income.
Other financial support is available through JobKeeper (including the self-employed) or JobSeeker.
For more details see The Office for the Arts COVID-19 update.
For many in this sector, the funding is helpful but the future will be determined by how quickly or otherwise the distancing measures are retracted. After all, most entertainment relies on a crowd.
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