12/23/2020 ats / nxp
CULTURE – A MANIFESTO SENT TO BERN TO DEFEND THE INDEPENDENTS
Some 450 cultural players have signed a manifesto intended for Parliament and the Federal Council asking for better economic support for independents in the field.
The manifesto recalls that people working in culture in the broad sense represent 6.3% of working people in Switzerland (photo of an action in Lausanne on December 1).
Independent cultural actors feel “unfairly excluded from society as decisions are taken at federal or cantonal level to combat the epidemic”. A manifesto has just left for Bern, supported by major festivals, political figures and even the infectious disease specialist Didier Pittet.
Some 450 cultural players have signed a manifesto intended for Parliament and the Federal Council. They would like the self-employed in the cultural sector to be defended with the same ardor as that employed for other sectors of the economy, ”writes the collective, at the origin of this approach. It is made up of seven people, including Jean-Philippe Jutzi, a former diplomatic adviser in Paris and China, cellist Estelle Revaz and artist Célina Ramsauer.
The range of artists concerned is vast: from the lyric singer to the filmmaker, including the pianist, the writer, the comedian, not to mention the technicians. And they have had an extremely difficult year due to restrictions linked to the outbreak.
Culture: one in four workers is self-employed
The manifesto recalls that people working in culture in the broad sense represent 6.3% of working people in Switzerland. In 2018, the added value of the cultural economy amounted to 15.2 billion francs. Independent cultural actors represent 28% of people working in this field. Unable to happen, they are the ones who suffered the most from this crisis in 2020.
Independent cultural actors feel discriminated against when they observe that religious, sporting or political events are the subject of authorizations, while cultural events, which may nevertheless meet the same protection plans, are prohibited.
Broad cultural and political support
The major players in the cultural scene in French-speaking Switzerland and the neighboring region have signed the “Manifesto of cultural players”. Political figures also support this approach: in particular the Valaisan national councilor Mathias Reynard, chairman of the Committee for Science, Education and Culture, or the former federal councilors Micheline Calmy-Rey and Pascal Couchepin.
Independent cultural actors ask to be compensated in the same way as cultural institutions and other economic branches. “Access to these benefits must take into account the precariousness of their situation, in particular in terms of the terms and time limits for granting.”
With the support of Didier Pittet
Cultural circles are also worried about the next steps that will be taken and demand that culture no longer be discriminated against: “The cultural sector has shown that with a great deal of adaptability, it is possible to offer tailor-made events that can respect the all of the barrier gestures. ” On this aspect, the group notes that Didier Pittet, doctor and head of the HUG infection prevention and control service, provided support for the approach of cultural actors.
Cultural actors are asking to be able to resume their activities in compliance with health rules: “Covid-compatible cultural events do not replace ordinary cultural events banned due to the situation, but they allow many cultural actors to survive while waiting for the ‘arrival of federal and / or cantonal aid. “