‘Film budget cuts affecting social inclusion in Arts’ – McKevitt

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Friday, December 19th, 2014
SDLP Culture, Arts and Leisure (DCAL) spokesperson Karen McKevitt has said cuts of up to fifty per cent to NI Screen’s budget could affect the good work being done to make the arts accessible to all sections of the community.

SDLP MLA Karen McKevitt

The South Down MLA said, “It’s very worrying that the outworking of DCAL cuts will hit hard on front-line services that are doing great work bringing the arts into the community and making it accessible to all. “The DCAL Committee is currently holding an inquiry into social inclusion within the arts and although its work is not finalised it has already highlighted many good examples where event organisers are trying their best to introduce people from disadvantaged backgrounds to the arts, for example, free tickets to events and bus transport. “News that NI Screen is having its budget cut by half, with the fall-out hitting film festivals’ ability to run events or even exist, flies in the face of all the good work being carried out to ensure the arts are there for everybody,” she insisted. “There are so many unanswered questions surrounding on-going cuts. Will they affect schools’ visits to our many arts festivals, which are such an integral part of introducing our next generation of creativity to the arts? McKevitt added, “It is imperative that Culture Minister Carál Ní Chuilín looks constructively at how she can offer support to ensure the long-term sustainability of the arts.”
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