Spotlight: Mass Humanities Talks About The Vote 2020

Every four years, the national conversation around elections takes on an added intensity. 2020 is no different, and in the midst of discussions about voter suppression, the census count, and a presidential election, the twin crises caused by COVID-19 and police violence against Black lives bring an increased sense of urgency and importance to this year’s vote. That’s why every community in the Commonwealth, especially the arts & cultural sector, must do their part to advocate for civic engagement.

Read more
Add your reaction Share

Phase 3 Reopening

Last Friday, July 2, Governor Baker announced his plan for Phase 3 of the Massachusetts reopening plan. As most arts and cultural organizations will be reopening their spaces in Phases 3 and 4, MASSCreative is here to help make sense of the reopening plan and clearly communicate sector-specific guidance. The arts and cultural community has been hit hard by the pandemic, and reopening can be a difficult and daunting process. At MASSCreative, we are here to direct and support you as best we can.

Main take-aways from Phase 3 Reopening

As a Commonwealth, we have seen the number of cases and deaths from COVID-19 decrease thanks to following common-sense public health guidelines including wearing masks and maintaining social distances. As Phase 3 begins it will be our responsibility as a sector to carefully adhere to guidance and mandates in order to protect our artists, staff, audiences, and communities.

Below you will find direct links to industry-specific guidance for our sector. Similar to Phase 2, Phase 3 will involve two steps:

Phase 3, Step 1 (Begins today July 6th)
Please note: The City of Boston will begin Phase 3, Step 1 on Monday, July 13th. 

Phase 3, Step 2 (detailed guidance and start date will be released soon.)

  • Theaters and Performance Venues - indoor seating allowed
  • Indoor recreation - activities with greater potential for contact allowed. 

Phase 4 - Start date will be announced based on data and the progress of previous phases. 

  • Large capacity venues (arenas, stadiums, night clubs, exhibition and convention halls)

mc_news_dotLine.jpg

Reopening Resources

Victor "MARKA27" Quinonez's mural on Exchange Street in Lynn, MA
 

We recommend reviewing the Commonwealth’s Reopening Resources available on their website

In addition, here are several useful guides that provide national and international best practices: 

Submit your questions about Phase 3 & 4  Reopening

We understand that Reopening Guidance from the Commonwealth is ongoing and will evolve as more information and feedback are collected. MASSCreative has been in communication with the administration about your questions on Phases 3 and 4, and will relay information to you as soon as possible. We are still collecting questions with this form

 

mc_news_dotLine.jpg

Virtual Policy & Action Updates

 

We hope to provide more in-depth guidance at our next Policy & Action Update on Friday, July 10 from 9:45-10am.  This week we will feature arts and cultural organizations who have developed reopening plans for Phase 3.  Please join us. 

Register for MASSCreative’s July 10 Policy & Action Update

 

mc_news_dotLine.jpg

Relief for the Arts and Cultural Sector

Last week the Senate debated SB 2789, a Supplemental Budget that would set spending for COVID-19 related relief funds.  As part of the Senate Bill, Senator Patrick O’Connor (R-Weymouth) filed Amendment #123 to create a relief fund for small cultural nonprofit organizations. Distributed by the Mass Cultural Council, the the fund would be for small nonprofit organizations with less than 25 employees. As Senator O’Connor said during the debate: “These organizations [small cultural nonprofits] are indispensable to our communities.". Many of these small groups were ineligible for the Paycheck Protection Program or CARES Act relief funds distributed by the NEA, NEH, IMLS, Mass Cultural Council and Mass Humanities. 

We are delighted to share that the amendment was accepted and a $2 million relief fund was included in the final Senate bill.  We encourage emailing Senator O’Connor (Patrick.O'[email protected]) and Senator Adam Hinds ([email protected]) a note of thanks for their leadership and advocacy for this fund.

From here the bill will go to conference committee where the House and Senate will reconcile differences between their versions. We recognize that the needs of our sector are great requiring multiple policy interventions, government programs and safety nets in order to get us through prolonged closure.  This fund is a piece of our overall advocacy and efforts.

mc_news_dotLine.jpg

If you’re looking for more COVID-19 resources, you can check out MASSCreative’s COVID-19 pages, including updates, resources, advocacy, policy recommendations, and policy & action updates.

Add your reaction Share

June 29 Policy Update

MASSCreative continues to monitor and report on state and federal policy that supports equitable communities and a stronger, more inclusive creative sector. Here's the Policy Update from the last week:

FY20 Final Supplemental Budget

On June 22, the House passed the $1.1 billion FY20 supplemental budget, which is an additional budget that provides more money to some items in the final budget. Rep. Bud Williams added Amendment #81 to make Juneteenth an official state holiday. Currently, Massachusetts’ commemoration of Juneteenth occurs on the Sunday after June 17, but this new law would officially put the holiday on its actual date of June 19. The supplemental budget still needs to be enacted by the Senate on Wednesday before it can be approved by Gov. Charlie Baker. We will be advocating for Rep. Williams’ amendment to be included in the final Senate version of the budget.

Read more
Add your reaction Share

June 29 Policy & Action Review

Last week, we launched Create the Vote 2020 in partnership with a steering committee of organizations from across the Commonwealth. This kind of coalition is new for the Create the Vote campaign, but we can’t help but feel that there’s no better time for this type of partnership. All over the country, we’re seeing the power of collective action in creating change within our communities. In a newly-isolated world, we at MASSCreative hope our actions and campaigns offer you the opportunity to get involved, connect with your network, and work together to make Massachusetts a more vibrant, creative place. 

mc_news_dotLine.jpg

Virtual Policy & Action Updates

Thank you to the hundreds of advocates that have joined the MASSCreative team for our weekly Virtual Policy & Action Updates on Fridays from 9:45-10:00am.

Check out MASSCreative’s June 26 Policy & Action Update

Register for MASSCreative’s July 10 Policy & Action Update

mc_news_dotLine.jpg

Top Policy Update

Top_Policy_Update.png

MASSCreative continues to monitor and report on state and federal policy that supports equitable communities and a stronger, more inclusive creative sector. 

Learn more in MASSCreative's Policy Update, including:

  • State Budgets
  • Economic Development Bond Bill
  • Reopening Plan
  • Federal Reserve

mc_news_dotLine.jpg

Top Action: Create the Vote

On Wednesday, June 24 we launched Create the Vote 2020 alongside the Create the Vote Steering Committee! This year, we’re asking partners to pledge to Create the Vote and increase voter participation through non-partisan voter registration, education and turnout. We have radical hope for the future of our community, and ask you to join us in building a more equitable, inclusive representative democracy for all. Will you pledge to #CreateTheVote?

mc_news_dotLine.jpg

Top Action: Arts Education

Top_Action_Update.png

Right now, the Commonwealth and its cities and towns are grappling with major losses in tax revenue and increased sanitation costs brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. In facing these difficult decisions, several school districts have laid off educators, including art teachers. As schools plan to reopen in the fall, students will need more educators and resources that support their social and emotional learning, not less. Reach out to your MA legislators to advocate for the protection of Chapter 70 Education Funding and equitable access to quality education.

mc_news_dotLine.jpg

Top Action: Call for Testimony for Economic Development Bond Bill

The Joint Committee on Economic Development and Emerging Technologies scheduled a hearing last Friday for HB 4529, An Act enabling partnerships for growth. Currently, the bill does not include any relief funds, workforce development programs or other supports for the creative sector. We encourage members of the creative sector to submit written testimony stating the creative sector's role in the economic recovery of the Commonwealth and requesting that the committee include our sector in the bill by July 1.

mc_news_dotLine.jpg

Some Good News

Despite the isolation that the current public health emergency requires of all of us, the concept of community has never felt so important. Every day, we’re seeing the ways people are reaching out to one another — to connect, to comfort, to offer resources or support or gratitude. For those of us involved in arts & culture here in the Commonwealth, this emphasis on community is not new, but rather baked into the very nature of our work. And in some very special places, these strong community networks have long been in the making.

Read more in our Spotlight: Arlington Community Comes Together Through Art

Image courtesy of Stewart Ikeda.


mc_news_dotLine.jpg

We want to note that there will not be a Virtual Policy & Action Update this Friday, July 3 as the MASSCreative staff will be taking a long weekend. Our next Policy & Action Update will be Friday, July 10 from 9:45-10am, and we hope to see you there!

If you’re looking for more COVID-19 resources, you can check out MASSCreative’s COVID-19 pages, including updates, resources, advocacy, policy recommendations, and policy & action updates.

Add your reaction Share

Spotlight: Arlington Community Comes Together Through Art

Despite the isolation that the current public health emergency requires of all of us, the concept of community has never felt so important. Every day, we’re seeing the ways people are reaching out to one another — to connect, to comfort, to offer resources or support or gratitude. For those of us involved in arts & culture here in the Commonwealth, this emphasis on community is not new, but rather baked into the very nature of our work. And in some very special places, these strong community networks have long been in the making.

Read more
Add your reaction Share

June 22 Policy & Action Review

Last Friday, we celebrated Juneteenth--an honoring of freedom and emancipation of the last remaining enslaved people in 1865, two years after the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation. The work towards racial and economic justice calls us as creatives, artists, and culture workers to take individual and collective action towards a more just future. This weekly Policy & Action Review includes ways to stay informed, take action, and connect with the larger advocacy community. Please join us in our work to build a stronger, more inclusive creative sector.

mc_news_dotLine.jpg

Virtual Policy & Action Updates

Thank you to the hundreds of advocates that have joined the MASSCreative team for our weekly Virtual Policy & Action Updates on Fridays from 9:45-10:00am.

Check out MASSCreative’s June 19 Policy & Action Update

Register for MASSCreative’s June 26 Policy & Action Update

mc_news_dotLine.jpg

Top Policy Update

Top_Policy_Update.png

MASSCreative continues to monitor and report on state and federal policy that supports equitable communities and a stronger, more inclusive creative sector. 

Learn more in MASSCreative's Policy Update, including:

  • Safe and Fair Elections
  • Arts Education
  • Capital Budget and Reopening Plan
  • Federal Reserve and SBA

mc_news_dotLine.jpg

Top Action: Create the Vote

Save the Date! On Wednesday, June 24, MASSCreative and the Create the Vote Steering Committee are launching Create the Vote 2020! Create the Vote 2020 is a nonpartisan, public education campaign to increase civic engagement and strengthen democracy by engaging members of the creative community in voter education, registration, and turnout. Keep a look out on Wednesday for the #CreateTheVote Pledge and online Toolkit.

mc_news_dotLine.jpg

Top Action: Arts Education

Top_Action_Update.png

Right now, the Commonwealth and its cities and towns are grappling with major losses in tax revenue and increased sanitation costs brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. In facing these hard decisions, several school districts have laid off educators, including art teachers. As schools plan to reopen in the fall, students will need more educators and resources that support their social and emotional learning, not less. Reach out to your MA Legislators to advocate for the protection of Chapter 70 Education Funding and equitable access to quality education.

mc_news_dotLine.jpg

Spotlight

In 2013, MASSCreative launched Create the Vote around the Boston mayoral election to ensure arts and culture was part of the debate and vision for a future Boston. Over the past seven years, this nonpartisan, public education campaign has gone statewide and activated local networks of arts and culture advocates to engage in conversation with candidates running for local office about arts and culture policy. With Create the Vote 2020 launching this week, longtime supporters will notice that this year’s campaign is taking on a different shape.

Read more in our Spotlight: Reimagining Create the Vote


mc_news_dotLine.jpg

Hope to see you on Friday, June 26 from 9:45-10am for our next Policy & Action Update.

If you’re looking for more COVID-19 resources, you can check out MASSCreative’s COVID-19 pages, including updates, resources, advocacy, policy recommendations, and policy & action updates.

Add your reaction Share

June 22 Policy Update

MASSCreative continues to monitor and report on state and federal policy that supports equitable communities and a stronger, more inclusive creative sector. Here's the Policy Update from the last week:

Safe and Fair Elections

In the past two weeks, both the House and the Senate passed “an act relative to voting options in response to COVID-19,” which would expand vote-by-mail and other voter accommodations in light of the pandemic. However, the versions of the bills that were passed in the House and Senate—HB4778 and SB2764, respectively—are different. When the House and Senate pass different versions of the same bill, they must go through the Conference Committee to reconcile their differences. The Conference Committee members are: Representative Lawn and Senator Finegold (Co-chairs of the Election Laws Committee), Senators Creem and Fattman, and Representatives Moran and Hill.

Read more
1 reaction Share

Spotlight: Reimagining Create the Vote

In 2013, MASSCreative launched Create the Vote around the Boston mayoral election to ensure arts and culture was part of the debate and vision for a future Boston. Over the past seven years, this nonpartisan, public education campaign has gone statewide and activated local networks of arts and culture advocates to engage in conversation with candidates running for local office about arts and culture policy. With Create the Vote 2020 launching this week, longtime supporters will notice that this year’s campaign is taking on a different shape.

Read more
Add your reaction Share

June 15 Policy & Action Review

Educate. Advocate. Organize.

These are the strategies that guide MASSCreative's work to interpret policy into action for a stronger and more equitable creative sector in Massachusetts. We hope you're finding your own way to educate, advocate, and organize during the current social and economic crisis brought on by both COVID-19 and police brutality and racial injustice. And during it all, MASSCreative is here to provide you with the policy advocacy and action updates needed to support equitable communities and a stronger, more inclusive creative sector.

mc_news_dotLine.jpg

Virtual Policy & Action Updates

Every Friday from 9:45-10am, the MASSCreative team hosts our Virtual Policy & Action Updates. These 15-minute updates are meant to provide you with what you need to know about policy advocacy and actions you can take to support the creative community.

Check out MASSCreative’s June 12 Policy & Action Update

Register for MASSCreative’s June 19 Policy & Action Update

mc_news_dotLine.jpg

Policy Update

Top_Policy_Update.png

MASSCreative continues to monitor and report on state and federal policy that supports equitable communities and a stronger, more inclusive creative sector. 

Learn more in MASSCreative's Policy Update, including:

Elections and the Census

Arts Education and PreK-12 Reopening Plans

Paycheck Protection Program and Main Street Lending Program

Reopening Massachusetts: Phase 2, Step 1

H. 4755 An Act establishing a COVID-19 nonprofit cultural organizations emergency relief fund

mc_news_dotLine.jpg

Action Update

Top_Action_Update.png

We are all being called to take individual and collective action to build a more equitable, just future. Here are some actions you can take advocate for cultural equity and lift up the creative community:

mc_news_dotLine.jpg

Spotlight

We want to continue to use this space to highlight the work of MASSCreative Member Organizations and partners committed to racial equity. We want to thank and highlight the leaders doing the deep work to build anti-racist arts and culture organizations and advance cultural equity.

Marian Brown of Arts Connect International is one of those leaders. The new Cultural Equity Learning Community, created in partnership with The Mayor’s Office of Arts & Culture and The Boston Foundation, was developed in the recognition that any discussion of equity within the arts and culture sector must acknowledge the long history of oppression, marginalization, and violence that shapes our society, and our institutions.

Read more in our Spotlight: Arts Connect International Promotes Cultural Equity

mc_news_dotLine.jpg

Hope to see you on Friday, June 19 from 9:45-10am for our next Policy & Action Update.

If you’re looking for more COVID-19 resources, you can check out MASSCreative’s COVID-19 pages, including updates, resources, advocacy, policy recommendations, and policy & action updates.

Add your reaction Share

Arts Connect International Promotes Cultural Equity

In the arts and culture community, we often view the work we do as a tool for social change. And that is true; the arts have an incredible and unique capacity to connect our communities, change our minds, open our hearts, and share stories that have long gone untold. However, we must also recognize the myriad of ways that arts & cultural institutions perpetuate harm against marginalized communities, especially Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC). Unequal access to funding, space, and education; microaggressions and discriminatory behavior within work and creative spaces; a tendency to center whiteness instead of amplifying the voices of BIPOC creatives; these are some of the ways that the creative sector upholds racist structures within our institutions. To become true accomplices in anti-racist work, change must start from within. 

Read more
Add your reaction Share

← Previous  1  2  3  4  5  6  Next →

Community Impact