Restoration of funding to culture has begun but Government are not on course to double funding in seven years

In response to Budget 2019, Sinn Féin spokesperson for the Arts Senator Fintan Warfield has welcomed the restoration of funding to cultural bodies and agencies but has called on the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht to finally offer clarity about the government’s commitment to double arts funding by 2025.

Senator Warfield said:

“In 2017, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar committed to double arts funding over seven years. Two budgets later, the government have only increased spending on culture by 13.8% (from €130.2m to €148.2m), a long way off an increase of 100%.

“Minister Madigan said today that this budget demonstrates a realisation of that promise. But the figures simply do not back that up.

“Artists continue to be left devastated by austerity. According to CSO data, artists now earn 3.5% less income than they did in 2013.

“It is therefore critical for the Arts Council to ensure that the full 10% increase provided by Government is passed on to artists who have been making brilliant work, while struggling for years to make ends meet”.

Irish Times, ‘Young Ireland forum’ debates future of Republic

An article by Mark Hilliard (Irish Times), who attended the “Young Ireland Forum” hosted on Pearse Street, Dublin on Friday 8th, April.

The melting pot. One hundred years and a short walk from where the 1916 Proclamation was unveiled, the next generation of Irish political thinkers gather.

It is a meeting of young minds in a country locked in political attrition. The partisan debate of the 1916 Clubs’ inaugural “Young Ireland Forum”, aptly hosted in Dublin’s Pearse Centre, aims to seek out “a common mindset regarding issues pertinent to the Republic”.

GCN Issue 316: The Seanad Candidates

Members of the LGBT community contesting election to Seanad Éireann 2016, were given an opportunity to set out our priorities. I focus on the need for island wide marriage equality, and trans young people.

During my term as Mayor of South Dublin, I was proud to prioritise LGBT rights, homelessness and young people. My work alongside relevant NGO’s and their successful record in working with previous Senators instilled in me a belief, that although Seanad Éireann demands radical reform, it has been an effective political space for a number of progressives.