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Money: soon a basic income for artists?

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Le gouvernement irlandais versera à 2000 artistes et professionnels des industries créatives une aide financière d'un montant de 325 euros durant les trois prochaines années. © The Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media The Irish Government will pay 2000 creative artists and professionals financial assistance in the amount of 325 euros over the next three years.

needy, artists have been at all times. They are even more after two years of pandemic. Some countries like Ireland create a basic income for artists to combat precariousness in the cultural sector in the era of COVID. Explanations.

325 euros. This will, every week, the Irish government to 2000 artists and professionals of the country's creative industries. They will affect this amount as part of a basic income project for the arts, tested for the next three years. The Irish wishing to benefit them must practice a profession contributing to the "production, interpretation or exposure of the arts", whether in the field of visual arts, theater, literature, music, arts. show or even architecture. They will be able to submit their application online from April 12 to May 12th.

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According to Catherine Martin, Minister of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sports and Media, this initiative seeks to remedy the financial instability facing many cultural workers. "This decision announces a new era for the arts in Ireland. While our artists and professionals are emerging from the devastating impact of the pandemic, the government is committed to providing them with an unprecedented level of support while they are seek to rebuild their livelihoods. I want the arts are not content to recover, but they flourish, "she said in a statement.

The idea of ​​establishing a basic income for the creative industries had been suggested to the Irish Government in 2020 as part of the "Life Worth Living" report. Prime Minister Micheál Martin sees a "unique" way to support the country's artists and creators while ensuring that "the arts thrive in the future".

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The Finnish example

The British country is not the only one to consider this solution to support artistic creation in the face of the sanitary crisis. In the United States, the Town Hall of San Francisco launched similar financial assistance in March 2021. One hundred and thirty local artists received a monthly allowance of $ 1,000 (about 920 euros) for six months. "If we help the arts to recover, the arts will help San Francisco recover. This new program is an innovative effort to help our creative sector through this difficult period and to come back even stronger and more resistant than before", Then had declared the mayor of the metropolis, London Breed.

In Saint Paul, in Minnesota, the Springboard for the Arts association also set up financial assistance for artists and other cultural professionals. Twenty of them, living in the neighborhoods of Frogtown and Rondo, receive until August an allocation of 500 dollars (about 460 euros) per month. The goal ? Help them support them while encouraging other US cities to launch similar initiatives.

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If universal income, for artists or not, arouses great skepticism, the pandemic has helped to evolve the debate on the welfare state. Finland has not expected the health crisis to bring back the idea of ​​a basic allowance. The Nordic country paid 560 euros monthly to 2,000 jobseekers aged 25 to 58, in place of their unemployment benefit, between 2017 and 2018. They had all been drawn to assess the consequences of the introduction "Basic income" (term retained in the country for universal income), and possibly generalize it to the entire Finnish population.

researchers from the University of Helsinki found that, if this ambitious project did not help to promote employment as the Government of Juha Sipilä hoped (the Finnish Prime Minister at the time) he has Improved the mental well-being of its beneficiaries. They were more satisfied with their situation and felt less stress than the control group, as stipulated by the study published in May 2020. It remains to be seen whether the Irish Government initiative will have the same effect on artists and other professionals. Creative industries of the country.

Caroline Drzewinski

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