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Crisis affecting workers in Film and Theatre needs immediate attention of New Minister - Peadar Tóibín TD

30 November, 2017

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Heritage and the Gaeltacht Peadar Tóibín TD has welcomed Josepha Madigan TD as the new Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, and said the new Minister must hit the ground running as her Department has a number of major issues that must be addressed immediately.

Teachta Tóibín said;

"I want to wish the newly elevated Fine Gael TDs luck in their new roles. It is of serious concern however that the new Minister for Culture Josepha Madigan has had a track record to date of seeking to prevent one constituent group within our culture, the Traveling Community from simply putting a roof over their heads.

"It is important for the new Minister to put on the record now that there is no location in the State that is a cold house for any group of citizens.

"One of the major issues facing the incoming Culture Minister Josepha Madigan is the crisis in the Arts sector. We have all heard now of the shocking allegations of Sexual Harassment and Bullying in the sector.

"Most people will not know that there is a whole scale problem with the ability of workers in both the Film and Theatre sectors in achieving their normal worker’s rights, Precarious work, bullying, and fear preventing reporting of this is widespread.

"It is also being reported within the sector that those who do raise their voices to simply achieve their legal rights are being black listed.   

"Minister Madigan needs to create a Film and Theatre Forum in order to bring together the stakeholders of the whole industry in order to reform the sector.

"This Forum needs to focus on improving the working conditions of people in the sector, rebalancing the power differential that exists between workers and employers and maximising the creative development of the sector.

"Minister Madigan is so far a blank page with regards the Irish language. We hope that the Minister takes a more active and positive role in funding and defending language rights  than was seen by the previous Minister."

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