Submission to the Senate on COVID-19 - 28 May 2020

AusHeritage has provided a submission to the Senate Select Committee on the Government’s response to COVID-19.

The following recommendations have been reproduced in full:

1. AusHeritage requests the Australian Government to provide financial support to the museum sector for the coming two years by which time it would be able to generate replacement income.

2. The Australian Government should issue a Ministerial statement of support for the cultural heritage sector which recognises the importance of cultural heritage and its central role in a post-COVID 19 recovery program.

3. Taking a smarter approach to managing risk and health factors would be of great assistance to the re-opening of cultural places. This would include analysis of particular risks relevant to a particular place e.g. indoor places will have a different level of risk to outdoor heritage places. The opening of cultural places should align with hospitality, places of entertainment and non-essential retail.

4. The Australian Government should increase funding for jobs to speed up re-opening. It is difficult for the public face and back-of-house staff in this sector to work remotely as they are custodians and managers of places and objects in a fixed location subject to various levels of security.

5. The Australian Government must liaise closely with the cultural heritage sector for advice and input as part of a collaborative and collective response. This should include the establishment of taskforces to work closely with stakeholders in the cultural heritage sector to develop ways in which these places can be made COVID-19 secure.

6. It is also important to monitor overseas best practices and adopt them where relevant.

The following is a link to the Parliamentary website for further information:

https://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Business/Committees/Senate/COVID-19/COVID19/Submissions