SDLP Social Justice Spokesperson Mark H Durkan has reiterated calls for increased support for the Arts Sector following the Executive’s decision to reclose theatres.
The move comes weeks after Mr Durkan criticised the Department for Communities for a lack of forethought, deeming the reopening of theses venues as ‘financially unviable.’
The Foyle MLA commented:
“This is the only reasonable decision at this stage and I’m glad the Department have heeded my calls to reinstate theatre closures here.
"The reopening announcement was evidently for the sake of a headline and demonstrative of the Department's complete lack of communication and grasp on the situation unfolding within the Sector.
“While we all look forward to a return to live performances, there needs to be a measured approach to reopening theatres and concert halls. The move by some of our biggest theatres to cancel all performances until 2021 was not taken lightly but in light of current social distancing restrictions, left them with no alternative.
“This move must now be backed by extended financial support from the Department.
“Minister Ní Chuilín has yet to provide clarity on how the £33 million funding allocation from Westminster will be used to support the sector – including the venues and artists depending on it. This must be provided as a matter urgency.”