Committee Visits Portstewart to Find Out About Inclusion in the Arts

Synopsis: The Committee for Culture, Arts and Leisure held a stakeholder event in Portstewart as part of its Inquiry into the Inclusion of Working Class Communities in the Arts.

Session: 2013/2014

Date: 12 June 2014

Reference: CAL 04/13/14

The Committee for Culture, Arts and Leisure held a stakeholder event today in Portstewart as part of its Inquiry into the Inclusion of Working Class Communities in the Arts. The Committee is calling on local arts venues, organisations, statutory bodies, groups and individuals to provide examples of best practice and to discuss current strategies to widen access, knowledge and inclusion.

Committee Chairperson, Michelle McIlveen MLA said: "The Committee recognises that initiatives to maximise the inclusion of working class communities in the arts have already been implemented, many of which have been very successful. However, my Committee is concerned that more needs to be done to ensure that working class communities here have better access to the arts.

"The arts are a central part of the Committee's remit and our decision to hold this inquiry reflects that. Participation in the arts can provide tremendous benefits and we believe that all communities should be provided with equal opportunity to get involved.

"Over the past months, we have met a wide range of arts-based groups and individuals from across Northern Ireland to discuss the barriers that exist as well as any initiatives that have served to maximise inclusion. Today's event in Portstewart is part of our work to bring our inquiry into local communities, and today we heard directly from people in the north-west about what the arts mean for them, and what might enhance engagement in the arts in their area."

ENDS

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