Government of New Brunswick
task-force-groupe de travail-category

Status of the Artist

The report can be accessed here: Status of the Artist Report

After 7 years of work, the Premier’s Task Force on the Status of the Artist report is completed.

The Report highlights 24 recommendations, which address the improvement of the socio-economic status of professional artists.

The Report is divided in four parts:

  1. Understanding Creative Work
  2. Artists living in Economic Insecurity
  3. A Legal Framework
  4. Increasing the Median Income and Access to Social Benefits for Artists

The following items would ensure provisions specific to New Brunswick Professional Artists and the recognition of their profession:

  • Definition of professional artist
  • Recognition of professional artists in New Brunswick
  • Individual negotiations rights for professional artists

In summary, the report addresses the socieconomic status of professional artists in New Brunswick, and introduces the creation of legislation:

  • Providing a general framework to affirm recognition and fair compensation for professional artists, and;
  • Establishing broad terms for artists’ negotiation.

The Task Force is confident that the report and its recommendations will help achieve an increased median revenue and a greater access to social benefits.

In 2014, the provincial government committed to recognizing and supporting the valuable contributions made by professional artists to provincial prosperity, to increasing their educational opportunities, and to examining and improving the working conditions and the economic and legal status of the artist. Recognizing that “Artists contribute a great deal to New Brunswick’s quality of life, economy and to the strength of the cultural fabric of our communities,” then-Premier David Alward established the Task Force to examine the issues and make recommendations on measures or legislation that would improve the socio-economic status of professional New Brunswick artists. 

Artists are the driving force behind a cultural industry that contributed over $572 million to our provincial GDP in 2018, yet their median annual income remains below that of other workers. In 2016, the median individual income of Canadian artists was $24,300, compared to $43,500 for all workers. The problem is rooted in the fact that most artists are self-employed, with atypical work patterns characterized by intermittent or cyclical periods of activity. As a result, they are often not well served by existing federal and provincial government policies and programs. New Brunswick has no legislation to protect or advance the status of professional artists. By addressing those policy and program gaps and helping professional artists earn a reasonable income, our province will increase its cultural capital, improve its economy, and create a better place for all New Brunswickers to live.