Artists call on Liberals to keep promise

    Status of the Artist Act needs fundamental changes, says ACTRA

    TORONTO, April 25 /CNW/ - ACTRA Toronto President, Karl Pruner, called on
the Ontario Liberal government to keep its promise to artists by adopting
meaningful amendments to the badly flawed Status Of Ontario Artists Act.
    Pruner presenting at the Ontario Budget hearings was speaking to The
Status of the Ontario Artist Act which was introduced on March 22, 2007, as
Schedule 39 of the Budget.
    "This Act, as presented, gets a failing grade," said Pruner. "After years
of hard work by the Culture Minister's own sub-committee on Status of the
Artist, all this empty Act contains is a weekend to celebrate artists."
    Artists are among the most underpaid workers in our economy and they are
without many of the protections and benefits that other workers rely on. In
the 2003 election the Liberals promised to bring in Status of the Artist
legislation to address these concerns. The Act, as presented, acknowledges the
substantial contribution of artists to the economic and social well being of
the province but fails to provide any solutions to the challenges they face.
It fails to include any of the Culture Minister's own sub-committee's
recommendations on Status.
    "This is a sorry attempt by the government to check something off their
to-do list before the next election. This is not a promise kept. This Act
needs fundamental changes," stated Pruner.
    ACTRA along with many other arts organizations is calling for legislative
amendments that include protections for children, income averaging, access to
training funds, housing support and a process to improve the collective
bargaining process for artists.

    ACTRA Toronto Performers is the largest organization within ACTRA,
representing more than 13,000 of Canada's 21,000 professional performers
working in the English-language recorded media in Canada. As an advocate for
Canadian culture since 1943, ACTRA is a member-driven organization that
continues to secure the rights and respect for the work of professional

For further information:

For further information: For media inquiries please contact: Carol
Taverner, Public Relations Officer, ACTRA, (416) 644-1519, 1-800-387-3516,
cell (416) 768-3336,

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