Ireland pays its musicians a weekly salary

Translated by Nadia Sol Scheneider 

Debates around the world for a universal basic salary policy have unfolded in recent years, with much more emphasis on the end of the COVID-19 pandemic, as a way out of an economic catastrophe unprecedented since the crash of 1930.

From the ministry of culture of the European country they have shaped the Basic Income for Artists, with a budget of 23 million dollars. This flow will be destined for all artistic areas such as dance, writers, musicians, and even circus artists.
Of nine thousand registrations for this benefit, only two thousand were accepted given the coverage capacity of the plan. These two thousand people were chosen  randomly

Of the 2,000 recipients, 700 are visual artists, 584 musicians, 204 filmmakers, 184 writers, 170 actors, and other live theater workers that included 32 dancers and choreographers, 13 circus performers, 10 architects, and 50 Irish language workers.

Each of these two thousand artists will receive a weekly stipend of $330 per week. Although it is not much, its main effect is based on the coverage of a basic basket.

This fund dedicated to artists forms the Basic Income of Ireland, with the purpose of reducing poverty and homelessness in that country.

Ireland continues the path traced by Canada, a country that since last year inaugurated the Canada Music Fund as social aid to face the exit from the pandemic.

The Canadian budget allocates 50 million dollars between this year and next, to add compensatory aid to arts, culture and fundraising organizations, given the economic loss caused by restrictions on public health and audience capacity, and to encourage the public participation in these activities. This amount of money comes to reinforce the 300 million available for 2021 and this 2022, as part of the Recovery Fund for Arts, Culture, Heritage and Sports (CACRP, for its acronym in English).

This Canada Music Fund has two initiatives, according to the government of that country, the first one individual (providing financial assistance exclusively to activities that are central to the development of Canadian artists, the promotion of their music and the expansion of their audiences) and a collective one (providing funding for activities that help Canadian artists and their professional industry gain greater exposure both in that country and internationally, the growth of their artistic and business skills, and foster the export and competitiveness of the same).

Of those $50 million from the CACRP, $14 million will be administered through this Canada Music Fund this year and next under the initiative called “Continuation of Emergency Support” for music venues, concert promoters and producers. 2022-2023, having its two derivations: the English-speaking market as well as the French-speaking one.

According to the official website of the Basic Income for Artists in Ireland: “Basic income is not a panacea. It will not automatically create a greater appreciation of the value and range of creative and artistic works. Society as an entity must create such an appreciation. If we want to have a society that values ​​art and creativity as intrinsic activities, and as activities that are of both personal and community benefit, we need to have active public conversations about these issues.
Basic income plays a broader role in trying to give art and creativity the support and recognition it deserves.”


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