The Liberal government in British Columbia has taken to draconian arts cuts in the most damaging of ways. Queer Cultural institutions and British Columbia social profits groups are scrambling to figure out how to keep their doors open.
We have been actively speaking with the media and members of the artistic and queer communities about ways to minimize the impact of the removal of support from gambling profits that the BC government has imposed. Seán is also active on committees dealing with these issues at the Alliance for the Arts and Culture & the Greater Vancouver Professional Theatre Alliance.
Screaming Weenie, have been completely cut from annual support of gambling profits that we have used to produce original queer theatre in Vancouver over the years. And we are just one group of hundreds across the province who face closure. The government has failed to explain why BC is the only province in Canada who is abandoning social profits groups and the staff who feed their families in the arts.
In order to keep our doors open, Screaming Weenie is cutting staff to 10 hours a month. That includes all work on development programs for young playwrights and queer refugees. Clean Sheets, the national new play and workshop series produced by Screaming Weenie is also at risk.
Arts funding in BC is expected to be cut by 75% from $47 million in 2008 to $6.9 million in 2010.