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Govt must do more for Australian artists and creatives

The Treasurer is in the box seat to fix the problems with the JobKeeper program that has locked workers in the arts, entertainment and events industries out of the $130bn package, the Greens say.
The Greens moved in the Senate last night to amend the Coronavirus legislation to ensure casuals employed less than 12 months, freelancers and other businesses with work structures unique to the arts industry were covered but the Government and One Nation voted it down.
“The Morrison Government has so far failed to save the multibillion dollar arts and entertainment sector from collapse and swift action is needed now before it’s too late,” Greens Spokesperson for the Arts Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said. 
"The fact remains the Treasurer does have the power under the legislation to allow workers in the arts, entertainment and events industries to access the JobKeeper program and he should act to do that now.
"The longer the Treasurer delays exercising his discretion, the more jobs are lost and the harder the recovery when this crisis is over.
"Australians across the country are relying on the work and contributions of Australia’s artists to help get us all through this very difficult period and we will when it comes to recovery. We are watching their shows, films and listening to their music. Yet the Government doesn't seem to value this work even though it contributes $112 billion to our economy.
"Even the Minister responsible for the portfolio has only been able to find $27m to go towards the sector, and only today after weeks of suffering and when the industry has been screaming out for a tailored package in the vicinity of $1billion.
“The Greens have been backing the industry’s call for a specific and tailored package of $1bn. The Government has stepped in to support other sectors of the economy and they need to do the same here. 
"Once again the Morrison Government is failing the arts, yet it could turn this around with the stroke of a pen today. I urge the Treasurer to do the right thing and ensure no worker is left behind in this crisis."
 

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