ATEED must pick tab for talent

Creative New Zealand’s decision to pull its support from the Pasifika Festival should act as a catalyst for Auckland Tourism Events and Economic Development (ATEED) to pay artists for their performances, says Labour’s Pacific Island Affairs spokesperson, Su’a William Sio.

“The festival has delivered economic benefits to Auckland for 21 years now. It is time ATEED and Auckland Council treated the payment of artist participation as a ‘core event cost’ instead of relying on external funding.

“Artists and performers spend considerable time preparing and rehearsing for Pasifika. There is no assurance they will be paid for their time an effort if they have to rely on external contestable funding.

And without the artists and the tufuga’s creative input Pasifika Festival would be a very different event.

“ATEED should not demand organisations that support the development and promotion of artists pay for their participation. It should instead invest in the talent that is central to the success of the festival.

“We all champion Auckland as the Pacific capital of the world– lets make sure the very people whose talents, vibrancy, and smiles are used to promote that image also share in the benefits of Pasifika Festival,” Su’a William Sio said.

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