At a time when the epidemiological situation is improving and vaccination campaigns are speeding up, Member States are gradually reopening cultural venues and activities. Today's guidelines aim to provide a coordinated approach in line with the specific national, regional and local conditions. They are expected to guide the design and implementation of measures and protocols in EU countries to cover both the safe reopening as well as the sustainable recovery in the cultural and creative sectors.
The EU guidelines are based on the expertise of the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) and exchanges with the Health Security Committee. They take into account the different epidemiological situations in the Member States and their evolution. They provide the indicators and criteria (such as the viral circulation, the vaccination coverage, the use of protective measures, the use of tests and contact tracing), to be taken into account when planning the
resumption of certain activities.
More specifically, the guidelines recommend the following measures and protocols:
- The lifting of all restrictions should be strategic and gradual, with a restricted number of participants at the beginning to assess the epidemiological situation;
- Cultural establishments should have a preparedness plan detailing protocols of actions when COVID-19 cases are detected;
- Targeted information and/or ad-hoc training should be made available for all staff in cultural establishments to minimise risks of infection;
- Vaccination of persons working in cultural settings should be promoted to ensure their and the public's protection;
- Participants can be asked proof of negative COVID-19 test and/or vaccination and/or COVID- 19 diagnosis in order to be admitted to the venue. Depending on the local circulation of variants, this requirement can be extended to fully vaccinated individuals;
- Establishments should ensure that the contact details of the audiences are available in case they are needed for contact tracing;
- The establishment should put in place targeted protective measures: maintaining social distancing whenever possible, clean and accessible hand-washing facilities, appropriate ventilation, and frequent cleaning of surfaces. The use of facemasks by attendees is an important complementary measure.
A range of actions to ensure the sustainable recovery of the entire sector should accompany the reopening of cultural venues. Actions at EU level complement those taken by Member States and bythe sectors.
Member States are invited to take full advantage of the Recovery and Resilience Facility to invest broadly in the sectors and increase their capacity to adapt to new trends and emerge from the crisis.
The Commission has substantially increased its financial support to the cultural and creative sectors, with almost €2.5 billion from Creative Europe, and close to €2 billion from Horizon Europe dedicated to cultural, creative and inclusive projects from 2021 to 2027.
In autumn 2021, the Commission will publish an online guide on EU funding for culture, covering all existing EU funds that Member States and the sector can use.
- Publication date
- 29 June 2021