On May 9 European Leaders met in Sibiu to discuss the future of Europe. Leaders agreed in the Sibiu Declaration to renew their commitment to move forward in unity, upholding the founding values of the European Union. CAE welcomes the commitment to a future Europe that is fair, diverse and democratic. However, regrets the lack of an explicit mention of culture as a vital contributing sector.
We are however encouraged by the inclusion of culture in the outline of the Strategic Agenda 2019 – 2024 which has been discussed in Sibiu and will be adopted in June 2019. Investing in culture is listed as a priority for building a fairer and more inclusive future for Europe and for safeguarding our way of life, based on cultural diversity. CAE therefore hopes that in declaring to “continue to protect our way of life, democracy and the rule of law” and to “always uphold the principle of fairness”, National Leaders will commit to investing in culture and will explicitly recognise the value of culture and the arts for the future of Europe.
At this point and ahead of the next Council meeting in June when the Strategic Agenda will be adopted, it is important that we continue to insist on the inclusion of culture in the future of Europe. We invite CAE members and the wider cultural sector to be active at a state level and to encourage their National Leaders to adopt the view that a European democratic project needs culture to produce an open, inclusive, fair and diverse symbolic space.
If you haven’t taken action yet, we invite you to send this updated letter to your national leaders, ministers and representatives for culture. Together we can build a better Europe with more culture!