The outpouring of pain, grief and anger over the weeks since the murder of George Floyd has led to a national reckoning. It is abundantly clear that institutional racism is not just an American problem. That in a nation where the Grenfell Tower and Windrush scandals are still unresolved, where a conversation about our national wealth being founded on slavery is only just beginning to happen, there is work to be done. There is a long neglected duty for the whole country to stand shoulder to shoulder to protest for something that should be self evident: black lives matter.
It is a time for us to reflect on our own industry and ask ourselves some difficult questions: Is our work serving our whole country? Where have we failed and how can we do better?
One thing to emerge out of the Covid-19 lockdown is that we have had the time to pause for reflection. To think as we move forward: what kind of world do we want to build? As makers of culture we recognise that we are in a powerful position to effect change in the stories we choose to tell and how and who we choose to tell them.
We commit to using this moment to listen, to learn and to try and create effective plans for the future.
We pledge that our performers, workforce and leadership will be representative of our country.
We will ensure that the work we make is relevant to and reaches a diverse audience.
Our participation & education work will celebrate inclusion and diversity.
We pledge to support diverse emerging artists, creative and technical teams to enable the future of our industry to flourish.
It is vital that this moment of grief can lead a real shift of consciousness and fuel long term meaningful change. Our hope is that we will contribute to this and that we can play a part in creating a country with a healthier culture that we can all be proud of.