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A Lobbying Update for Wales

Wales & South-West England Regional Organiser, Andy Warnock, reports on how the region has been, “engaging and meeting with Welsh Government ministers and officials on a regular basis for several months,” and what they hope to achieve.

musician performing outdoors
The Welsh Government has taken a cautious approach to easing lockdown and have had input into a variety of guidance and reopening measures. Photo: Shutterstock

We’ve been engaging and meeting with Welsh Government ministers and officials on a regular basis for several months in order to lobby for further support for the music industry and musicians in Wales, highlight issues affecting our members, and help shape the recovery process and guidance.

Collaborating to lobby for funding

We have also been working with colleagues from BECTU, Equity, WGGB, and Wales TUC, especially to try and secure further support for self-employed workers and those that fall through the gaps of government schemes in particular – as well having regular discussions with the Arts Council of Wales.

Discussions about how the additional £59m arts and culture funding for the Welsh Government will be allocated and spent are ongoing. We are arguing, with the other creative unions, that the money must support jobs and workers as well as venues and organisations, in line with the Welsh Government’s fair work and social partnership principles.

The joint creative unions training project Cult Cymru has also secured new funding in order to provide additional training on issues such as health and safety, mental health, and wellbeing, that I’m sure will be helpful for members.

There have also been regular discussions with the Arts Council of Wales, while our engagement with Cardiff Music Board has continued and been helpful in relation to wider issues.

Highlighting the need for outdoor music

I’m pleased that Cardiff Council have been working on creating new and larger outdoor spaces for hospitality in the city, which we hope can also be used for performances and live music. We are also writing to other local authorities to encourage them to support live music outdoors during the summer.

The Welsh Government has taken a cautious approach to easing lockdown and have had input into a variety of guidance and reopening measures, but the current situation for music and musicians is unclear and we are now stressing the urgent need for a clear timetable and guidance on music and performing arts activity.

We have highlighted the particular need for outdoor music to return soon, given the other activity that has been allowed to resume, in time to take advantage of the summer and are hopeful that there will be clear progress soon.

Further guidance from the Welsh Government

The current Welsh Government guidance is available at the links below. This doesn’t currently include any guidance on performing arts activity, but we’ve stressed that this is needed urgently and are involved in ongoing discussions about its contents.

See more news, events and contact details from our Wales & South West England Regional Office.


Published: 23/07/2020

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