Renew Europe demands better conditions for artists and cultural workers across the EU

Author: Roxana Lazarescu

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The COVID-19 pandemic continues to affect Europe, and the closure of venues, exhibitions, festivals, and the cancellation of live performances has led many artists to lose all sources of income.

Renew Europe believes it is time the EU worked on a status of artist, by which we mean a framework of minimal standards that would ensure their rights and working conditions are respected throughout the entire Union. We ask the European Commission to ensure a better cooperation and coordination between Member States, so that artists, authors and performers can benefit from the advantages of the single market and freedom of movement within the EU as well as having access to unemployment, health care and pensions.

Our cultural and creative sectors contribute to democratic, free and inclusive societies and reflect our European values and way of life, says MEP Monica SEMEDO (Independent, Luxembourg), member of the Culture and Education Committee, Renew Europe rapporteur on an initiative adopted today by the European Parliament.

"Performers and artists have been wildly hit by the COVID-19 Pandemic. For many cultural and creative professionals, it's often necessary to have a second income in order to guarantee a certain degree of social security and stability. We as the European Parliament must do more to help Europe's cultural and creative sectors to get back on their feet" she adds.

Renew Europe also advocates for more measures to tackle gender equality and asks for the protection of artists from political repression and against discrimination in all its forms. Furthermore, we ask the European Commission and the Member States to make sure artists and their works are protected in the digital environment.

The cultural sector experienced turnover losses of over 30 percent for 2020 - a cumulative loss of €199bn - with the music and performing arts sectors experiencing losses of 75 percent and 90 percent, respectively. Culture generates 4.4 percent of EU GDP in terms of total turnover and employs around 7.6 million people.

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