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Advocacy

What is Advocacy?

The Vermont Arts Council defines advocacy as a political process in which individuals or groups of people influence public policy and resource allocation decisions at national, state, and local levels.

Government decision makers deserve to be well informed as they craft policy and legislation. It is fundamentally useful to speak about the real value that arts and culture provide in our communities and in Vermont.

make a difference

A single opinion has proven to have considerable strength, especially when expressed collectively. There are a number of avenues for effective advocacy.

2017 Advocacy Agenda

  • Increase the Arts Council appropriation by $500,000. As per regular budget protocol, the Arts Council presented a proposal to the budget office and the outgoing Governor’s office. The Council will also present this budget to the new Governor’s office and the legislature.
  • Insert the arts and creativity into Act 186 (the 2014 act relating to reporting on population-level outcomes and indicators and on program-level performance measures). The Council will define measurable ways in which the arts, culture, and creativity contribute to Vermont’s highest-level outcomes.
  • Ensure the arts are a part of every Vermont student's education. The Council is working with the Department of Education in the context of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) and Vermont Act 77.
Illustration includes captions. Illustration includes captions. North Bennington VAE; North Bennington Train Depot, education, exhibition, and performance space; Masonic Hall, basement music series; I am the Art Bus our "mission in motion" Rolling out to school events and festivals; Village School of North Bennington, teaching artists run the art program for Pre K through 6th grade! Also a summer art camp site; Left Bank, exhibition and performance space; Bennington College, partners in Fed. work study, internships, exhibition, and performance; Hilton Hall Garden; Head Start, art education for Bennington and Rutland Counties; VT School for Girls, art education and community partner projects for girls who have experienced complex trauma; United Counseling Service, intergenerational classes with Vermont School for Girls.

This drawing from the Vermont Arts Exchange beautifully characterizes the many layers of impact the organization has on the community (detail).

research agenda

  • increased cognizance of the arts, culture, and creativity in Vermont’s identity
  • incentives for small creative businesses
  • expansion of legislative commitments to the arts, drawing from ideas of model states

Resources

advocacy update

Sometimes an update, sometimes a call to action. Always information about the Council's position during the legislative session.

 

  • May 12 update  federal budget increases NEA funding | state appropriation level funded | Results-Based Accountability included in Council's strategic plan | advocating outside the legislative session
  • April 12 update  federal budget still hanging | state budget through senate committee, Alex Aldrich stepping down | national arts advocacy day in review | what you can do
  • March 14 update  federal budget news approaching | state budget news approaching | arts advocacy day approaching | what you can do
  • February 2017 update  status of funding for NEA still in question | national arts advocacy day coming | state arts advocacy day review | what you can do
  • January 2017 update  elimination of the National Endowment for the Arts proposed | Vermont Arts Advocacy Day is February 3, 2017 | Council begins testimony and legislative meetings
  • January 2017 welcome  2017 agenda | actions | advocacy tools available | national update | Vermont Arts Advocacy Day | National Arts Advocacy Day
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