New Legislation Recognizes Important Role Of Artists

    McGuinty Government Passes Landmark Legislation

    TORONTO, May 10 /CNW/ - The Ontario legislature today passed legislation
that will create a better environment for artists to live and work in Ontario,
Culture Minister Caroline Di Cocco announced today.
    "The McGuinty government is taking a leadership role in recognizing our
artists and their significant contributions to Ontario's creative economy,
quality of life and sense of identity," said Di Cocco. "This legislation
formally recognizes artists' contributions and introduces Ontario's first arts
and culture strategy. This is a significant foundation upon which to build a
better environment for our artists to thrive."

    The Status of Ontario's Artists Act, 2007:

    -   Formally recognizes artists' unique economic and social contributions
        to Ontario's society
    -   Introduces the province's first arts and culture strategy
    -   Conveys the government of Ontario's commitment to implement
        initiatives that enhance the socio-economic status of artists
    -   Declares the first weekend of June as Celebrate the Artist Weekend

    This act is one step in the government's strategy to help artists in the
province make a better living.
    "This government understands that while recognition is important, artists
continue to face challenges in pursuit of their art," said Di Cocco. "Artistic
communities foster innovation, creativity and a quality of place that gives
our province a 21st Century competitive edge. Just as importantly, artists
express the spirit and dreams of a society. I am proud that our government is
helping them to reflect the best of who we are to the world."
    Other McGuinty government initiatives to improve the lives of artists

    -   Strengthening the guidelines for Ontario's child performers in the
        entertainment industry
    -   Developing new learning and development opportunities for artists
    -   Boosting annual funding to the Ontario Arts Council by 38 per cent to
        $55 million over the next three years
    -   Increasing funding to the Ontario Trillium Foundation by 20 per cent
        over three years to $120 million
    -   Providing $10 million in one time funding to the Arts Endowment Fund.

    Disponible en français



                    STATUS OF ONTARIO'S ARTISTS ACT, 2007

    -   Recognizes artists contributions to Ontario's economy and quality of

    Definitions - Artists
    -   Recognizes artists as professional creators, interpreters, and
        performers working in diverse and emerging artistic fields.

    Recognition of Artists
    -   Formally recognizes artists' contributions to Ontario's quality of
        life, economy and society.

    Arts and culture strategy
    -   Sets out the Minister's commitment to develop and implement an arts
        and culture strategy for Ontario.

    Government Undertakings
    -   Conveys the government of Ontario's commitment to implement
        initiatives that enhance the socio-economic status of artists.
    -   Undertakings include: training and professional development
        opportunities, audience development, promoting artists' health and
        safety, strengthening arts and culture organizations, creating forums
        for artists to access information, promoting local culture tourism,
        and municipal cultural planning.

    Celebrate the Artist Weekend
    -   Proclaims the first weekend in June of every year as Celebrate the
        Artist Weekend
    -   Recognizes and celebrates artists in Ontario.

    Advisory Committee
    -   Enables the Minister to establish, at her discretion, one or more
        committees to provide advice on a wide range of issues that are of
        interest to artists.

    Disponible en français


For further information:

For further information: Mark Thompson, Minister's Office, (416)
325-4071; Guy Lepage, Communications Branch, (416) 314-3497

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Ontario Ministry of Culture

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