Reports that national cultural institutions are being forced to cut corners and their collections are at risk due to funding cuts again confirm the Government’s neglect of the arts sector.
Years of neglect and cuts have meant Australia’s national and cultural institutions are finding it harder and harder to do their job of protecting Australia’s culture, heritage and stories.
The small amount of funding the Government has provided for capital works simply isn’t enough.
Labor has welcomed this funding but it doesn’t go anywhere near replacing the money that has been cut out of the budgets of these institutions. Labor’s policy was to not apply efficiency dividends to cultural institutions.
While it is important government agencies improve efficiency and make savings by consolidating services where possible, for smaller agencies like Canberra’s National Library, National Film and Sound Archive, National Gallery, National Museum, National Portrait Gallery there comes a point where efficiencies cut to the bone.
National institutions play a critical role in Australia and in Canberra, housing stories of Australian culture and keeping those stories alive for visitors now and in the future.
It is vital we do not let these institutions wither away and only Labor can be trusted to properly protect the custodians of our national stories, history and physical treasures.
“These cultural institutions are Australia’s storybook. Through objects, archives and art they house the stories of Australia.” – Tony Burke MP
“These institutions play a crucial role in supporting Canberra as the national capital as well as providing hundreds of jobs for Canberrans.“ - Senator Katy Gallagher
“Our cultural institutions are an essential part of Australia's social fabric. In an era of declining community engagement, it's critical that we properly fund our museums and galleries.” – Andrew Leigh MP
“We are not cutting into flesh; we are not cutting into bone; we are cutting into vital organs. And, once you start doing that, you have the potential for things to end, for our national story to be killed.” - Gai Brodtmann MP
This is a joint media released with Tony Burke MP, Andrew Leigh MP and Gai Brodtmann MP.