Representatives of the sector said that the number of workers registered in the register of professionals in the field of culture is today 2,158 workers, 302 less than in October, representatives of the sector told Loza, after a meeting of the Commission for Monitoring the Statute of Professionals in Culture .
The number of workers enrolled in the RPAC was released today by the General Inspection of Cultural Activities (IGAC), in a meeting to monitor the statute, which took effect on January 1, 2021.
Today’s meeting, which took place in Lisbon, was attended by representatives of the IGAC, Social Security, the Tax Authority and various associations representing workers and the cultural sector, including the Especionário Association – Portuguese Agents and Producers (AEAPP), Cena-STE – Confederation of Audiovisual Workers and Musicians, Platea – Association of Performing Arts Professionals, REDE – Association of Contemporary Dance Structures, Association of Promoters of Shows, Festivals and Events (APEFE), Portuguese Association of Authors and GDA – Administration of Artists’ Rights.
At the end of the meeting, Rafaela Ribas, from AEAPP, and Rui Galvias, from Cena-STE, regretted, once again, the absence of the Minister of Culture or another representative of the Ministry.
For the AEAPP, this absence “reflects a lack of political will in the success of the platform”.
In October, several months later, the first meeting of the Commission for Monitoring the Implementation of the Sector Statute was held, during which some associations representing workers lamented the lack of responses and the absence of the Minister of Culture.
Today, Rui Galfias warned that “there is a lot to regulate, change and correct” in the document, which, since its entry into force, has been implemented in stages, with reduced participation from workers and criticism from associations.
The law defines the legal regime for self-employed cultural workers and covers three areas: Registration of workers. the requirement of employment contracts; and a social and contributory support system, which allows, for example, to receive a benefit equivalent to unemployment benefit.
In October, at the first meeting of the Monitoring Commission, it was revealed that only 2,460 workers had registered as cultural professionals, a mandatory step to obtain, for example, support for the suspension of cultural activities.
Today, there are 302. This drop in subscribers, according to Ruy Galvias, “says it all”.
“The structures have a lot of difficulty in understanding how the basic system works, the Social Security employees are not prepared to guide people and there is a lot of confusion”, he said, noting that the law “is a very dangerous law, unstable subject and a cloud of toxic fumes in the sector.”
According to Rafaela Ribas, at today’s meeting, sector representatives once again asked Social Security and Tax representatives questions that had already been raised at the October meeting and for which they still await an answer.
Like Cena, AEAPP also warns that the platform has several problems, which explains the drop in subscribers, on which “sector representatives are all in agreement”, underlined Rafaela Ribas.
This law has been defended for many years by liberal professionals, who defend the end of precarious work, but its implementation has been the target of criticism by representative bodies, namely due to excessive bureaucracy and the complexity of legislative information.
The social protection part of the law only came into force on the 1st of July, and only from the 1st of October can those registered in the Register of Cultural Professionals receive this benefit.
The law was implemented in a year in which there were early legislative elections and a change in the Ministry of Culture, with the departure of Graça Fonseca and the entry of Pedro Adão e Silva.
In May of last year, a few months after taking office, the Minister of Culture, Pedro Adaú y Silva, said in parliament that the law “was a very innovative policy”, but that it was not possible “to seek to end all the unstable ties of the culture”. .
“I don’t think it’s desirable, from the point of view of many cultural workers. I find it very difficult to understand. There are professions that, by their very nature, must preserve the possibility of uneasy bonds. Many attitudes, they are not absolutely bad, but we must focus in correcting and combating the instability that is really problematic.”
In September, the government approved an amendment to the statutes, a “surgical amendment”, according to Pedro Adaú y Silva, regarding the communication of employment contracts “which cease to be valid at the time the contract is signed and become quarterly”.
The culture minister at the time told reporters that “there is a responsibility for employers’ ability to comply with the law and workers will have to
ing the benefits of adhering to the basic system”.
However, industry associations expressed their “surprise” and “surprise” with the change, criticizing the government’s actions.
The next regulatory follow-up meeting will be held in April.
In recent months, Lusa has sent several questions to the IGAC on this subject, and is still waiting for a response.