Arts: Self-employment Income Support Scheme

Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport written question – answered on 26th October 2020.

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Photo of Yasmin Qureshi Yasmin Qureshi Shadow Minister (International Development)

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what plans his Department has to support freelancers working in the creative sector who are ineligible for the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme.

Photo of Caroline Dinenage Caroline Dinenage Minister of State

Arts Council England (ACE) has already distributed £104m through its Emergency Response Package to ensure the immediate resilience of this vital sector. The package included £80.7 million of support for cultural organisations, and £23.1 million of financial support for individuals, including freelancers. More than 9000 organisations and individuals were successful in applying for this emergency funding.

To complement Government Funding, ACE have made over £115m of funding available for individuals, including freelancers, to apply for. This includes:

  • £17.1m through the Emergency Response Fund for individuals;

  • £18m through their Developing Your Creative Practice fund;

  • £75m through National Lottery Project Grants and

  • £6m distributed by a series of Benevolent Funds focused on the self-employed.

An unprecedented £1.57 billion support package for the cultural sector has benefitted the live events sector by providing support to venues and many other cultural organisations to stay open and continue operating. £333 million was awarded to 1973 arts organisations which had applied for grants less than £1 million from ACE. Each organisation that receives money will know what best they can do to support their workforce, including their freelance workforce.

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