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News (9)

Privatise national museums

The tourism industry wants to privatize public museums. Amos Wekesa, CEO of Great Lakes Safaris, says “I think museums should be privatized… We have not tapped into culture yet there is so much potential. When we talk about culture, we mean mountains…”

Source: www.independent.co.ug

Protest over claims firm has reneged on living wage pledge for gallery staff

Staffers charge that the National Gallery’s private, for-profit contractor is not honoring an agreement to pay a living wage. “Members of the Public and Commercial Services union working in the London gallery's visitor services staged a series of strikes in protest at the privatization of their jobs. The union claimed that more than a year after taking over the contract, private firm Securitas has ‘reneged’ on a pledge over the London living wage and is creating a two-tier workforce by ‘driving down’ pay and conditions. PCS general secretary Mark Serwotka said: ‘The only thing Securitas is living up to is our prediction about what this sell-off would mean. It is outrageous that more than a year on, the company is refusing to honour its commitment on the living wage, and is creating a two-tier workforce and driving down pay and conditions.”

Source: BelfastTelegraph.co.uk

Lawmakers are trying to step in to prevent the privatization of FESPACO

Lawmakers are trying to step in to prevent the privatization of FESPACO, the country’s world renowned film and culture festival. “It is important to have legislation. If FESPACO, which is created by an administrative text, tomorrow is created by a law, it will be difficult for the government to privatize without going through the parliament,” says Michel Ouédraogo.

Source: burkina24.com

Artists connect Partition and current day privatization in their work

Artists Zahra Malkani and Shahana Rajani connect Partition and current day privatization in their work. “We were not interested in just looking at Partition as one major event in our history but rather how it has become a lasting practice and is still contributing to an ongoing devastation that is happening even today. These acts of enclosure and boundary-making by privatization of land are continuing to bring destruction and alienation,” Shah said. “The transformation that has been happening in the local ecology and community because of influential builders taking it over under the pretext of 'developing' it caught our interest. We worked on it for about six months and had researchers, artists, historians and ecologists working alongside us. We worked thoroughly to share it with the public,” she explained.

Source: www.thenews.com.pk

Privatization has added to the burden of public museum workers

Privatization has added to the burden of public museum workers. “When visitor services at the Imperial War Museum were privatized in 2014 we warned that handing them to a security firm with no museum experience would be a mistake. The company, Shield, has now gone bust and staff are still waiting for outstanding pension contributions. In the relatively short time the firm was in charge, our representatives raised numerous concerns about health and safety on HMS Belfast and security issues at the main Lambeth site. “At the National Gallery, where outsourcing of visitor services to Securitas triggered a high-profile dispute last year, workers wince at press reports that director Gabriele Finaldi thinks the privatization is “working rather well”. This is not the experience of staff who have been engaged in a six-month battle just to have seats provided during exhibitions and are still waiting for the commitment to pay them the living wage to be finalized. The same company has recently won a lucrative contract to supply zero-hour staff at the Tate and is trying to deny workers their collective trade union rights as part of our recognition agreement.”

Source: the Guardian

Education support and cultural workers in Norway

May-Britt Sundal, vice-president of the Norwegian Union of Municipal and General Employees–Fagforbundet division for church, culture, children and youth, discusses education support and cultural workers in Norway. She explains that “the cleaning workers’ division in Fagforbundet is the most affected by privatization, but in the sector I represent, privatization also presents a threat to kindergartens, where private investors are eager to obtain their share of public funding.”

Source: www.world-psi.org

Ministry confirms plan to privatize Martyrs’ Shrine

The Ministry of Defence says it plans to privatise the operation of the Yuanshan Martyrs Shrine. “Military officials said the proposal was made by the Ministry of Finances department of private participation promotion, which conducted a privatization feasibility study in consultation with the MND last year. The study was the first phase in the planning. We have to assess whether privatization would be feasible, while addressing possible obstacles and acknowledging public opinion, [MND spokesperson] Lo said.”

Source: www.taipeitimes.com

300 artists come together to save Venkatappa Gallery - Times of India

300 artists join together to protest plans to privatise the Venkatappa Art Gallery in Bengaluru. “We have gathered in a symbolic human chain to express our solidarity against the government's decision to privatize our only art gallery. This is the only democratic space in the entire state. We want to fight for its freedom as well as that of the community's,” said Alaka Rao, an artist and one of the organizers of the protest.

Source: The Times of India