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Senate Inquiry into arts funding begins in Melbourne

“The mood of arts organisations has moved substantially from shock to anger. People want to know why this is happening and why they're being forced to cut staff, sack people or cancel touring schedules.”

“The mood is actually very bleak, not just because of the amount of money that has been shifted, but the fact that from now on, George Brandis and his little hand-picked selection committees will be able to make funding decisions about touring schedules and arts funding in general. 

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Greens support arts community push for Senate Inquiry into Brandis arts takeover

Greens Senator Scott Ludlam today said the Greens will join the arts community push for a Senate Inquiry into Brandis’ arts takeover.

“Australia’s arts should not be the personal fiefdom of George Brandis,” Senator Ludlam said. 

“The Greens agree we need a Senate Inquiry to examine why the government is attacking the arts and undermining the Australia Council.”

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Artistic Freedom

The hypocrisy is galling. Abbott government Minister George Brandis' invokes freedom of speech when advocating for a winding back of protections against racial vilification, and yet moves to censor artists wishing to criticise his government's appalling and cruel refugee policies.

Protection for hate speech and banning of conscience is now the Abbott government's signature arts policy.

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Abbott government’s political interference in the arts

The Australian Greens say the Minister for the Arts, Senator George Brandis, is engaging in political interference in the arts by threatening to withdraw funding.

"The Abbott government is trying to bully artists and the Australia Council because it can't handle criticism of its cruel refugee policies," Australian Greens Leader Christine Milne said.

"The arts should be completely free from political interference and the Abbott government's move to censure the Australia Council with threats and reviews is directly at odds with this.

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Supporting Young and Emerging Artists

The Greens want to ease the pressures on musicians, writers and artists to earn a living wage from their work. After all, creativity enriches everyone's lives. We have a plan to help young Australians forge lifelong careers in the creative industries.

The normal annual wage for a musician is a mere $8,100. Meanwhile, the average visual artist will work 42 hours a week for $35,000 a year. Many artists are forced into poverty and come under such pressure that they might give up their artistic aspirations altogether.

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Greens call for regional arts funding boost to help Sunshine Coast artists

The Australian Greens are calling for a $10 million boost to the national Regional Arts Fund to support emerging artists in vibrant regions like the Sunshine Coast.

"With the Sunshine Coast's stunning beaches and gorgeous rainforests, there's so much to inspire artists in this region," Queensland Greens Senator Larissa Waters said.

"Labor has made cuts to the Regional Arts Fund, the federal government's central pool of money used to cultivate community projects and support regional artists.

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Regional arts would boost territory: Greens

Australian Greens Leader Senator Christine Milne says the Greens plan to inject an additional $10 million in regional arts would provide a big boost to Territory communities.

"Regional arts give more bang for funding buck," Senator Milne said.

"Labor and the Coalition have ignored the value of regional arts but the Greens would restore funding to its peak, creating jobs and empowering communities.

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Let's Support Regional Arts

We want our regional communities, who are rightly proud of their unique identities, to be able to express their talents, their values and their stories.

That's why we'll invest an additional $10 million in regional arts funding.

We will invest $6 million to restore the Regional Arts Fund, in real dollars to its 2004 peak;

We will invest a further $4 million so that regional and remote local governments to establish ongoing employment positions whose job will be dedicated to artistic cultural development, like cultural development officers.

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