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ISM response to new Government

The new PM has appointed her Cabinet this week. Among the appointments of relevance to ISM members is the new Secretary of State for Education, Kit Malthouse, while Michelle Donelan becomes the Secretary of State for the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS).

ISM Chief Executive Deborah Annetts offered her congratulations to the new Secretaries of State on their appointments and made the following statement:

“I hope that the Education Secretary will share our concern that the number of music entries at A-level and GCSE have fallen by 40% and 27% respectively since the introduction of the English Baccalaureate. We urge the new Secretary of State for Education to take action to reverse this damaging trend by reforming or scrapping accountability measures such as Progress 8 and the EBacc.

“The new Education Secretary will also oversee the implementation of the new National Plan for Music Education and must ensure that all children receive high-quality music education in schools. The ISM looks forward to working with Mr Malthouse to ensure the substance of the Plan is delivered.

“We also look forward to working with the new DCMS Secretary of State on a number of issues important to our members, none more urgent than the impact of Brexit on touring. Since Brexit, it is far more difficult for musicians to tour and to work in Europe. New complicated rules including cabotage and CITES regulations mean musicians now face time-consuming and expensive red tape.

“The new Secretary of State must find solutions in order to allow our music industry, which was worth £5.8bn to the UK economy in 2019, to flourish. The UK music sector suffered greatly throughout the pandemic, and we urge the government to support its recovery.

“We also hope to collaborate with the new Secretary on securing fair remuneration from streaming for artists. The ISM believes that for too long creators have been inadequately paid for their work. A sustainable music industry must have fair remuneration at its heart.

“Like everybody else, musicians and music businesses are struggling with the cost-of-living crisis and the new government must ensure support mechanisms, such as those for household energy bills, reach everyone in the economy including the music sector.

“While there are clearly challenges facing our new ministers, there are also enormous opportunities. Our musicians and music industry are deservedly celebrated and we hope the government takes the opportunity to help them thrive.”