Restore Federal Government Funding to Roebourne Art Group
- Roebourne Art Group
- Hon Tony Burke MP, Minister for Arts
Until the end of the 2011/12 financial year, Roebourne Art Group - which supports indigenous artists working in the Pilbara - received funding from the Australian Federal Government under what is now called the Indigenous Visual Arts Industry Support (IVAIS) program.
However since the Group resolved to introduce a true partnership model wherein management of the Group is shared between a white Administrator and an Aboriginal Co-ordinator, the Federal Office for the Arts has indicated that this does not fit "the model" created in Canberra, some 5,000 km away.
When RAG refused to revert to the old management structure, in which a white person held sole authority over the workings of an indigenous organisation, the Government ceased its funding support.
With the art market in decline and indigenous art in particular being very difficult to sustain, Federal Government support is more vital today than ever before. Without this funding, the future of Roebourne Art Group is in grave jeopardy and the many benefits it brings to the indigenous communities of the Pilbara may disappear.
For an expert analysis of the many benefits of indigenous art centres, see: http://www.dia.wa.gov.au/Documents/ReportsPublications/Art_centre_report.pdf
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We, the undersigned, believe Roebourne Art Group has a vital role to play - not just in furthering the practice of a group of hugely talented indigenous artists but also in bringing to the community a host of financial, social, health, wellbeing and other benefits.
The Federal government has stated its commitment to "Closing the Gaps" - that is precisely what Roebourne Art Group has been doing since its inception in 2007. To force it to close because it wants to adopt a genuine partnership model of operation is entirely contrary to the sentiments expressed by the Prime Minister in his historic Apology to the Stolen Generations speech.
Minister, we urge you to restore funding support to Roebourne Art Group immediately, using your Ministerial discretion to do so.
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The Restore Federal Government Funding to Roebourne Art Group petition to Hon Tony Burke MP, Minister for Arts was written by Roebourne Art Group and is in the category Arts & Entertainment at GoPetition.