In an open letter, the Kulturrat Münsterland comments on the current situation of the arts and culture scene in Münsterland. It describes the current state "despite extensive financial support programmes" as "unsatisfactory" and endorses proposals by the Kulturrat NRW, which recommends some measures, some of which have already been implemented in the meantime.
This open letter was sent on 29 June 2020 to Prof. Monika Grütters, Minister of State for Culture and Media, Isabel Pfeiffer-Poensgen, Minister for Culture and Science of North Rhine-Westphalia, as well as to representatives at the municipal level. Here is the text of the statement, signed on behalf of the Kulturrat Münsterland by Dr. Christian Schulze Pellengahr, District Administrator of the Coesfeld District and Chairman of the Kulturrat Münsterland, and Klaus Ehling, Chairman of Münsterland e.V.:
"Statement by the Kulturrat Münsterland on the situation of the arts and cultural scene in Münsterland.
The effects of the Covid 19 pandemic and the accompanying restrictions, especially for the arts and cultural scene, are being felt everywhere. The state and federal governments have put together rescue packages of unprecedented amounts, thus underlining the importance and relevance of artistic and cultural work.
The Kulturrat Münsterland expressly welcomes this approach.
Despite these extensive financial support programmes, the current situation cannot be considered satisfactory for those working in the arts and culture in Münsterland.
Especially the independent actors are only considered to a limited extent in the funding programmes. The reference to easier access to basic benefits is not sufficient and fails to recognise the specific situation of these professional groups.
With regard to state policy, the Kulturrat Münsterland agrees with the proposals of the Kulturrat NRW. It recommends the following measures, some of which have already been implemented:
We would like to expressly ask the municipal sponsors from the region not to save on culture - as a supposedly "voluntary task" - in the coming budget years. Of course, the law on subsidies must also be applied here, but we recommend that subsidies be handled as flexibly as possible, in the interest of the arts and cultural actors concerned. A lively and diverse cultural landscape is indispensable for THE GOOD LIFE in Münsterland and the society of our region.
The Münsterland Cultural Council is made up of representatives from politics, cultural administration, cultural institutions and various artistic disciplines. This composition reflects the cultural diversity of the Münsterland. It is important to preserve it and at the same time prepare it for the future.
The Cultural Council emphasises the high relevance of art and culture for social coexistence. It asks those responsible in the districts and municipalities as well as at the federal and state levels to continue to put all their energy into preserving this cultural diversity.
Dr. Christian Schulze Pellengahr, District Administrator of the Coesfeld District, Chairman of the Münsterland Cultural Council
Klaus Ehling, Chairman of Münsterland e.V."
About the Kulturrat:
The Kulturrat Münsterland brings together around 50 representatives from politics and administration as well as from various cultural sectors. One of the most important tasks of the Münsterland Cultural Council is to advise and recommend projects for financial support through the Regional Cultural Policy programme. The Kulturrat Münsterland is also the first point of contact for the Regional Council of the administrative district of Münster for this topic and questions concerning cultural funding.
In addition, the Kulturrat Münsterland provides impulses in terms of content, takes a stand on cultural policy issues and gives weight as a representation of the interests of the cultural region. Permanent guests are the representatives of the Ministry of Culture and Science of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia and the Münster Regional Government.