Arts Day on the Hill 2020

Let’s achieve a critical mass of constructive advocacy on Wednesday 12 August 2020 with a focus on Question Time.

Arts Day on the Hill is Australia’s annual focus on building sector capacity for sustained government engagement and lasting policy reform. This year’s Arts Day on the Hill will take place on Wednesday 12 August.

Leading sector service organisations from across Australia focus their public advocacy on Arts Day on the Hill, engaging in a day of intensive media and social media, as well as direct political engagement. The program will feature a strong online component of advocacy training and network building well ahead of the day, with an intensive day of engagement on 12 August, currently scheduled as the first sitting week after the Parliamentary winter break. Participants will be connected with members of Parliament and provided with the tools and resources to champion an ambitious arts agenda for a long-term impact.

Applications to be a Media Spokesperson or Advocate have now closed, but we'll need everyone on board to keep parliamentarians engaged with the critical issues of this moment.

We've put together your Arts Day on the Hill 2020 guide and a social media kit of logos, tiles, banners and even a virtual background for your meetings with MPs! And if you haven't already, please go through the exercises in the Advocacy Workshops Handbook’s final chapter NATIONAL IMPACT, so that you're all ready to bring attention to the national priority issues for the arts and creative sector.

Here's the plan

1. Connect with MPs over social media or in person

Choose your local MP, your state senator, key ministers in arts, tourism, regional development… who would you like to meet?

If your state restrictions allow, ask your local member for a meeting on Wednesday 12 August at their electorate office – or better yet, invite them to visit your studio or gallery.

Follow them on social media well ahead of Arts Day on the Hill.

2. Research their background, their first speeches, and their electorate or state

Use the NAVA Advocacy Program Handbook (see below) to guide you so that you’re all ready for Arts Day on the Hill with a good sense of their personal passions and political priorities.

3. On Wednesday 12 August: Let’s do this!

Use #ArtsDayontheHill all day to advocate for what the arts needs right now. Share images of your meetings, record a video and tag in your MP, and involve as many people as you can! Then, come 2pm:

QUESTION TIME 2:00-3:00pm AEST: Let’s aim for critical mass. Engage your MPs in some visionary questions that inspire them to respond on all the ways that we #CreateAustraliasFuture.

Find all MPs on Twitter here:

Here are some sample tweets to rework as you like:

  • Welcome to #ArtsDayontheHill Question Time. My question is for the Treasurer @JoshFrydenberg. What Australian art would you like to see leading us out of #COVID19 – and how? With arts investment generating 9 jobs for every $1m turnover, why isn’t this a major recovery focus?
  • Hi @localmember! I’m an artist who works in your electorate. My work is part of the arts-led #COVID19 recovery. Let’s invest in creative skills, arts tourism, and the jobs and opportunities that power the entire economy… and there’s no time to be lost. #ArtsDayontheHill
  • Time for an arts-led #COVID19au recovery! Let's look at tourism. With borders closed, regional tourism will boost the economy. Arts tourists are high-value: they travel further, stay longer and spend more than domestic tourists. Let's go! [link to our key webpage] #ArtsDayontheHill
  • We need an arts-led #COVID19au recovery. Let’s look at jobs. For every $1m in turnover, the arts industry creates 9 jobs! It’s only 0.36 in oil and gas extraction! Investment in the arts boosts the entire economy. Let’s do this. #ArtsDayontheHill
  • An arts-led #COVID19au recovery will power the entire economy. Let’s look at skills. Every major global economic body and think tank identifies creativity as the skill set for the future economy. So why are we undermining arts education when we need it most?. #ArtsDayontheHill

4. Join our debrief at 4:00-5:30pm AEST Wednesday 19 August

The final NAVA Advocacy Program workshop for 2020 will be for you to share your experiences – and let’s make plans for good next steps together.

5. Maintain those relationships!

Invite them to your studio, gallery, exhibition opening.

Meet them at their electorate office when restrictions permit. 

Stay connected and keep them engaged with your practice, your personal passions and your political priorities.

Leading up to Arts Day on the Hill, we will be hosting the NAVA Advocacy Program. Starting from 22 April, join Esther Anatolitis and Australia’s leading advocacy thinkers and practitioners online every Wednesday at 4pm AEST. Let’s talk arts, policy, media, political and public engagement. What works? What doesn’t? What can we achieve together?

Arts Day on the Hill 2019

Our 2019 Arts Day on the Hill was focused on meetings with MPs at Parliament House, with a Parliament House launch event the night before with the Parliamentary Friends for Contemporary Arts & Culture, a large and diverse cross-party group of Members and Senators co-chaired by John Alexander, Maria Vamvakinou and Adam Bandt. We then took part in 18 meetings across two days, presenting to MPs across a diverse range of parties on national policy priorities.

Ahead of the first Arts Day on the Hill, NAVA presented a two-day workshop to build specialist advocacy skills. Our workshops were presented with the Parliamentary Library’s civics workshops, the Museum of Australian Democracy, the National Gallery of Australia, the Director of the Parliament House collection, a regional perspective from Regional Arts Australia, and a global perspective from the International Federation of Arts Councils and Culture Agencies. Last year our focus was on the independent arts, bringing together an artist from every state and territory to be trained in policy engagement and advocacy ahead of meetings with MPs. This year we’re focusing on a smaller group of industry leaders, building sector capacity to distribute effective advocacy.

Arts Day on the Hill 2019 was a collaboration between All Conference, APRA AMCOS, Asialink Arts, Arts Access Australia, Australian Library & Information Association, Australian Museums & Galleries Association, Australian Network for Art and Technology, Diversity Arts Australia, GLAM Peak, Live Performance Australia, Performing Arts Connections Australia and Regional Arts Australia, with the global perspective and expert advice of IFACCA.

2019 Recap