8.9 Enhancing social inclusion through culture
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The Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union applies directly to Ireland. The practice of diverse cultures is guaranteed under the Charter of Fundamental Rights and must be safeguarded unless practices conflict with other inviolable European rights or with national law.
Action 69 of the Migrant Integration Strategy 2017-2020 states that Arts and culture programmes and policy will assist in the promotion of the arts and culture of diverse communities across Ireland. The Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media is responsible for implementing this action.
Arts and Disability Ireland is the national development and resource organisation for arts and disability. It promotes engagement with the arts at all levels – as professional artists, audience members and arts workers – for people of all ages with disabilities of all kinds. It works towards arts programmes and arts venues becoming fully accessible experiences for all audiences. Arts and Disability Ireland also advocates for inclusive policy and practice which provides real access to all aspects of the arts for people with disabilities, and for everyone.
Through the Communities Integration Fund 2021, the Minister for Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth announced €500,000 in funding. This is the fifth year of the Communities Integration Fund that celebrates the rich cultural diversity within local communities and enables local community-based organisations across Ireland to play a greater role in supporting the integration of migrants. Eligible organisations can apply for grant funding of €1,000 – €5,000 to support local integration initiatives.
The Heritage Council has offered funding for activities that promote integration. In some cases, this funding has targeted migrants, refugees or new arrivals to Ireland.
Further cultural initiatives focusing social inclusion are discussed in Chapter 8.4 Reducing obstacles to young people's access to culture.
Combating discrimination and poverty through cultural activities
Culture 2025 A National Cultural Policy Framework to 2025 considers a range of important issues including:
- supporting artists and creative workers,
- improving access to culture,
- breaking down barriers in areas of social exclusion and disadvantage,
- how culture is enriched by greater cultural diversity.
The policy is underpinned by key values including:
- the right of everyone to participate in the cultural life of the nation
- the value of cultural diversity, informed by the many traditions and social backgrounds in Ireland.
Culture 2025 is described in further details in Chapter 8.3.
Under the Programme for a Partnership Government, the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media was committed to commemorating the most significant events in the State’s history, ensuring that these commemorations are inclusive, and aiming to enhance understanding of shared history, particularly among children and young people.