When Parliament convenes, will Mia Mottley, Stephen Lashley and Adriel Brathwaite respect the wishes of The Concerned Creative Citizens Group (CCCG)? Or will Bajans be ignored yet again?

{EDITOR’s NOTE: In this special Release, there is a copy of a PDF which is Downloadable and can be found at various points, apart from the Group’s Facebook page – if you want to twist the ear of your respective MP in relation to this matter? Please feel free!}

The Concerned Creative Citizens Group (CCCG) wishes to inform the public that despite a very one sided debate, the current Cultural Industries Development Bill (CIDB) is of great concern to many of the creatives of this country. Our Group comprising of 1251 members, along with many experts (both here on island and overseas) plus lauded artists in Barbados feel that the Bill in its current form is not worthy of passage in our Parliament.

Why has the Attorney General (in spectacles) ignored the proposed Amendments? The same way MP's from both sides ignore their Campaign posters which for the most part are still up and sun-bleached yet should have been removed the day after Elections in February?

Why has Adriel Brathwaite – the Attorney General (in spectacles) ignored the proposed Amendments? The same way MP’s from both sides ignore their Campaign posters which for the most part are still up and sun-bleached yet should have been removed the day after Elections in February?

Despite repeated attempts to present ways in which to make the Bill better, numerous requests to the Ministry and Stephen Lashley – Minister of Culture; Public Objections to this Bill in many of the Public Town Halls and Forums, yet we continue to be rebuffed and ignored. We have submitted documents to Adriel Brathwaite – the Attorney General, listing our objections with the bill, carefully and meticulously pointing out the ways in which it will fail to develop the Cultural Industries in any manner whatsoever, and in an effort to maintain absolute transparency, these documents have also been discussed with Mia Mottley – the Leader of the Opposition and Santia Bradshaw – the Shadow Minister of Culture.

Stephen Lashley making an appearance at a major Art Symposium but only days before Elections were called, now he's really needed to be responsive? He's as silent as Campaign Posters which remain festooned across Barbados, maybe the offending items should have been Bio-Degradable? Pity the same don't apply to MP's, eh?

Stephen Lashley (at podium) making an appearance at a major Art Symposium but only days before Elections were called, now he’s really needed to be responsive? He’s as silent as Campaign Posters which remain festooned across Barbados, maybe the offending items should have been Bio-Degradable? Pity the same don’t apply to MP’s, eh?

Our concerns are many and we list just some of them: lack of transparency, archaic guidelines for structuring of a board, the manner of designation of ‘Cultural Practitioner‘ status, the allowance for Government entities to apply for funding, excessive powers vested in the Minister, and that would be ANY Minister who may hold the position in the future.

Shadow Minister for Culture, Santia Bradshaw - who many hope will do her part in the House for the Cultural Industries Development Bill (CIDB) and prove to be more than lip service? The MP seen here with BLP colleague Kerrie Simmonds.

Shadow Minister for Culture, Santia Bradshaw – who many hope will do her part in the House for the Cultural Industries Development Bill (CIDB) and prove to be more than lip service? The MP seen here with BLP colleague Kerrie Simmonds, also expected to occupy his seat when the House convenes.

There is also a glaring lack of synergy between other Ministries and Sectors of this Nation within the Bill, which only further highlights how ineffective this Bill will be, and how little serious thought appears to have been applied to its structure. In today’s world, we at the very least expect the Ministries of Education, Tourism, Foreign Affairs & Trade to be involved, as it should be blatantly obvious how essential such inclusion would be for the continued development, spread & support of the industry in order to reach and sustain an international standard.

We reject any notion that this Bill should be passed for reasons such as “it’s a start” or that “it can be amended later“. This Bill is too important to be passed or rushed for any reason.

Mia Mottley spoke well outside of the House at the beginning of this year, can she maintain the momentum? The Creatives of Barbados are riding on this, but many are concerned since she decided to keep Owen Arthur's staff when she resumed as Opposition Leader - they wonder what message is this? Or what kind of deal was cut?  How effective a Leader is she if she has two men going to Court for what was essentially a Private matter and not openly Broadcast?

Mia Mottley spoke well outside of the House at the beginning of this year, can she maintain the momentum? The Creatives of Barbados are riding on this, but many are concerned since she decided to keep Owen Arthur’s staff when she resumed as Opposition Leader – they wonder what message is sent? Or what kind of deal was cut? How effective a Leader is she if she has two men going to Court for what was essentially a Private dispute and not openly Broadcast? Can she not quell it?

Our objections did not start recently. This is a battle that we and many like us have been fighting for the last 15 + months. We invite the public and the press to view all of our objections and files sent onto Government at our Facebook Group Page. There is a ‘file‘ section at top of the group page which has all suggested amendment papers worked on these last 15 months.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/Concernedcreativecitizens/

We urge you to make your voices heard, and to join us in our objection to the passage of this Bill.

One Response

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  1. I have full confidence that our Minister of Culture Stephen Lashley will see it as ‘best practice’ to hear the cries of the creatives and act upon them…I am not into politics but I feel positive that the Minister would want what is best from those who the government is trying to box in for the “good of the country” as the “entrepreneurs” of the future – the same ones expected to bring in the much required dollars for our ailing economy. I also feel confident that Mia Mottley, Leader of the Opposition, a creative herself, will back him right through in his genuine endeavours to see ‘his creatives’ as ‘happy bunnies’ working together with this same-said government to make the world stand up (at the very least the Caribbean) and see Barbados as the capital of creativity.

    It is only obvious that this Bill will be reviewed, and the hard work the CCCG has put into same (together with many in the know) will be seen as the saviour for all and not just the chosen few. After all…is it not better to have awesome ‘creating creatives’ from all disciplines instead of sour anti-government ones? So many creatives in so many disciplines on this little island… happy ones would certainly create an atmosphere of extreme excellence in their fields. And we all know this is what government wants – great productivity.

    Stephen Lashley has shown himself to be a man of his word…he said the Bill would be an asset to every creative…so bear this in mind…there is no doubt that he will change it so that it does the country good! Of course, he will. Our Minister has just been very busy with so many other issues, this one has been left for the last but…as the adage goes… will be his best triumph. We have so oft heard ‘the last is always the best’. Let us not be so negative, the Bill will be changed…and we shall all be rushing in no time at all to make those creative juices work for our country!

    Shock those disbelieving creatives Minister…show ’em how great thou art (pun intended).

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