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Action Steps for Advocating for the Importance of the Arts

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Jan 27, 2017

Given recent reporting from The Hill, Paste Magazine, and others regarding the current administration’s plan to defund the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, Americans for the Arts (AFTA) has shared strategies for pushing back against attempts to slash arts and culture resources.

Writing to the field, AFTA CEO Robert Lynch suggested that those looking to take immediate action to show their support for the arts should:

  • take two minutes to contact your two Senators and your House representatives now.
  • Join the Arts Action Fund (for free) so we can get alerts to you as quickly as possible and you can respond to decision-makers fast.
  • Work to get other colleagues to join the Arts Action Fund. We ask that you pledge to reach out to at least five board, staff, members, or audience members. Two national partners, the Association of Writers & Writing Programs and Blick Art Supply brought in 42,000 members and 37,000 customers respectively to become arts advocates for our cause.
  • Register to attend National Arts Advocacy Day on March 20-21 in Washington where you can add your voice in person.
  • Inform us of any specific actions impacting the arts in your community as a result of the President’s new executive order on sanctuary cities. Please email Ruby Harper at

State arts councils are also gearing up for what could be a protracted fight. The Portland Press Herald reports that while there is no concrete plan yet in place to mobilize against, the Maine Arts Council is nevertheless preparing to activate its constituents in support of federal arts funding.

Learn more about action steps that you can take at the AFTA website.

This resource brought to you by the National Guild for Community Arts Education.