Scottish Artists Union demands fair pay, work and conditions for all artists working in Scotland, we call on the Scottish Government and all political parties to turn this report’s recommendations into the necessary steps to deliver opportunities for artists in Scotland which pay them fairly for the work they do.
Over two-thirds of our members earn less than £5k of their taxable income from their practice and we note this report says that public funding of the arts will only be sustainable if artists are paid a fair wage.
A third of our members told us that they believe Creative Scotland is not fit for purpose and we urge them to work with us as the voice of working artists to build trust and a visual arts sector which puts artists at the forefront of a sustainable arts sector in Scotland.
Scottish Artists Union President, Lynda Graham says
“We welcome this report urging effective action on making work pay for artists. Our members tell us how unsustainable it is to be an artist working in Scotland today and change is long overdue. We particularly support the emphasis on investigating basic citizens income; percentage for the arts policy; and the focus on ensuring individual artists are fairly paid and funding is allocated proportionally.We call on the Scottish Government and all political parties to turn this report’s recommendations into the necessary steps to deliver opportunities for artists in Scotland which pay them fairly for the work they do.”
The Scottish Artists Union is the voice of working artists in Scotland. It represents over 1500 visual and applied artists and makers across the whole of Scotland. Began in 2001 by a small group of committed artists and now runs a nationwide learning and leadership programme funded by Scottish Union Learning. It is affiliated to the STUC and offers a wide range of benefits and services for its members.
We've highlighted FIVE recommendations from the report which we recognise will be of huge importance to our members:
- The Committee recommends that a new indicator is developed to measure the extent to which self-employed artists and cultural freelancers working in the arts and wider creative sector are paid a fair wage. [para 174]
- The Committee recommends that there should be no circumstances in which individual artists should be competing against network organisations for funding from Creative Scotland. [para 190]
- The Committee recommends that Creative Scotland measures funding that is allocated to artists who are producing artistic work as a proportion of the total amount of funding for each grant that it awards. [para 176]
- The Committee recommends that the Scottish Government take steps to ensure that artists and cultural freelancers are included in the range of participants in the ongoing feasibility studies into a basic citizens income. [para 204]
- The Committee recommends that the Scottish Government investigate how a percentage for the arts policy could be established in Scotland to create additional Investment in arts and culture and to embed it in planning for Scotland’s creative uture. This could be included in a future 'Arts Act'. [para 161]