Opinion: U.S. arts industry should highlight economic impact to make unified case for federal pandemic relief

Posted on: July 16, 2020

“We always talk about the philosophical impact of the arts … but what about the economic impact?” writes Karissa Krenz on Monday at New York classical radio station WQXR. “In March, the Bureau of Economic Analysis and the National Endowment for the Arts … reported that the arts and culture contributed $877.8 billion to the US economy in 2017, which is 4.5% of the nation’s GDP…. Many [European] countries have pledged to help their cultural sectors.… Here, it’s unlikely there would be a straight-up bailout—it’s going to have to be included in stimulus packages…. The kind of money raised and aid received so far is just not enough to keep everyone afloat for the duration [of the pandemic].… The League of American Orchestras, for one, is in a partnership of over 60 national arts organizations … pushing for a lengthy list of actionable items … in the next stimulus plan … which Congress is discussing through the end of July…. It’s wonderful that there are so many different calls to action, but it’s time for us … to stand as one. This needs to be an immediate, unified effort, and we need the vocal, visible support of our industry’s big hitters.”