Newsletter Issue Number:
AICCM National Newsletter No 149 March 2020
Jennifer O’Connell

Welcome to the first edition of the eNews for 2020.

The AICCM hit the ground running with Executive returning early from leave to initiate a response to the bushfire crisis with Blue Shield Australia (BSA). AICCM has joined a roundtable of representatives from GLAM Peak Bodies, which has been meeting regularly to discuss the response to bushfires and wider implications of climate change on cultural heritage organisations. In order to advocate for cultural heritage in relation to the bushfires, such as through submissions to relevant government enquiries, BSA created the Register of Cultural Organisations Impacted by the 2019/2020 Bushfires to be able to list losses / major damage. If you would like to contribute a listing, please contact AICCM BSA representatives. Furthermore, BSA has put together a survey to gauge how organisations were impacted by the bushfires. For example, did your organisation receive less visitors? Did you have to close for a period of time? If you would like to participate, please see the link from the AICCM home page.

Last year, the AICCM wrote to the Australian Ministerial Department expressing concern over the removal of ‘arts’ from the department’s name. A written response has been received,  outlining that no changes to the Arts budget have been made and that existing projects will continue. Both letters are published on the AICCM advocacy page on the website.

In this edition of the e-news, the Emerging Conservators Special Interest Group (EC SIG) has published an article on a recent survey undertaken, which included questions relating to the relevance of the peak body to this demographic. As the results captured responses from non-members, it provides an insight not usually captured via the AICCM biennial survey. National Council will work together with EC SIG on a range of initiatives to respond to these issues. The cost of membership and lack of clear value for money were reasons for not joining the organisation. Some membership benefits that are already available include access to the biannual AICCM Bulletin and notifications of job vacancies (ten jobs already posted in 2020!) Moreover, the AICCM SIGs are working hard on organising events for the next 18 months, including symposia and workshops. Calls for papers and event registrations will be advertised shortly.

On a sad note, we recently lost two great supporters and contributors to our profession, conservator David Hallam and founding director of the National Gallery of Australia, James Mollison AO. Obituaries and tributes are included in this e-news edition and the AICCM also wishes to express its condolences to family, friends and colleagues of both David  and James.

Jennifer O’Connell
AICCM National President