On Thursday November 2nd, 2017, 50 arts advocates from across Canada traveled to Parliament Hill to deliver the three messages of the Canadian Arts Coalition and to thank the Federal Government for the continued investment in the Canada Council for the Arts and the Creative Canada plan. Together, our advocates spoke with Parliamentarians in order to see continued investment in the arts and culture sector with the following:
- A doubling of the Canada Arts Presentation Fund from $32 million to $60 million, which will provide Canadian communities with more rich and diverse cultural experiences.
- Increase the Canada Arts Training Fund by $10 million to support the development of professional artists and arts workers and to support the training institutions as cultural hubs; and
- Raise the annual cap on the Canadian Cultural Investment Fund—Endowment Incentives to $3 million.
These messages were well received by 14 MPs of all parties. In total, we had 31 meetings with 35 individual delegates and 29 arts organizations. We met with both Heritage Critics; members of the Canadian Heritage, International Trade, and Finance; 8 senators; 3 meetings with party leadership from the NDP (MP Guy Caron, Parliamentary Leader), Conservative Office of the Leader of the Opposition, and the Prime Minister’s Office. We also had 7 meetings with Ministers’ offices including Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship; ISED; Small Business and Tourism; Heritage; Finance; Employment, Workforce Development and Labour; and Global Affairs.
A sincere thank you to all delegates who joined the Canadian Arts Coalition in Ottawa, representing artists and arts organizations from across the country! The significance of the arts was recognized as we saw an overall commitment, support, and appreciation from Parliamentarians. It was clear that our input was valuable to the development of the Creative Canada plan and that our advocacy is having an impact on how investments can be made toward arts and culture.
The Canadian Arts Coalition would like to give a special thank you to all who attended our end of day reception. Thank you to Julie Dabrusin for hosting the event and to Christine Friday and the Honourable Melanie Joly who joined us to celebrate another successful day of arts advocacy. What better way to close the evening but to have Minister Joly express the importance for Arts Day in Ottawa – for the diverse voices in the arts and culture sector to unite and be heard!
The 2017 Arts Day on the Hill could not have been possible without the tireless work of our partners and sponsors. The Canadian Arts Coalition would like to recognize: Kate Cornell and the Canadian Dance Assembly; Frédéric Julien and CAPACOA; Sara Meurling, Meg Shannon, and members of the Professional Association of Canadian Theatres (PACT); the National Arts Centre; Sean Casey and Tara Mazurk at Global Public Affairs; Harwood Estate Vinyards; Kichesippi Beer; Monique Renaud and Meg Shannon for managing the Coalition’s communications; and the Great Canadian Theatre Company.