The Scottish First Minister Humza Yousaf has defended the Scottish Government’s decision unexpectedly to reimpose £6.6m of funding cuts to Creative Scotland, citing “the disaster of the mini-budget” and “sky high inflation” as reasons for the move.
Replying on behalf of the Campaign for the Arts, director Jack Gamble said:
“The First Minister blames the Westminster mini-budget and rising inflation for this sudden U-turn, but the Scottish Government pledged to maintain funding for Creative Scotland in February, five months after the mini-budget, and since then inflation has actually come down.
We all accept that there are huge pressures right now – that’s exactly why the sector needs backing, and why Creative Scotland has sensibly been building reserves, including for a ‘transition fund’ to save companies from a financial cliff-edge if they lose regular funding. Even if we can trust that the Scottish Government will reverse this cut next year, they will still have made a significant, £6.6m dent in Creative Scotland’s reserves that will inevitably leave artists and organisations worse off.
Ministers say that they value the arts, but rather than investing in them and their social and economic potential, they are choosing to implement sudden funding cuts that will make Creative Scotland and the sector more precarious. It’s not too late for the Scottish Government to do the right thing, keep to their word, and restore this funding in the Autumn Budget Revision.”
Support for the Campaign for the Arts’ petition continues to grow.