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Statment on Cultural Equity

To support a full creative life for all, the Virginia Commission for the Arts commits to championing policies and practices of cultural equity that foster a just, inclusive, and equitable Commonwealth.


Cultural equity embodies the values, policies, and practices that ensure that all people—including but not limited to those who have been historically underrepresented based on race/ethnicity, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, socioeconomic status, geography, citizenship status, or religion—are represented in the development of arts policy; the support of artists; the nurturing of accessible, thriving venues for creative expression; and the fair distribution of resources.

We acknowledge and affirm that…

  • Cultural equity is critical to the long-term viability of the arts sector and the community at large.
  • Everyone deserves equal access to a full, vibrant creative life. This is a bedrock principle of a healthy and democratic society
  • Change happens when we acknowledge and challenge our inequities and work together as partners.

To provide informed, authentic leadership for cultural equity, we strive to…

  • Practice intentional outreach to promote cultural opportunities beyond existing constituencies.
  • Periodically review our policies, systems, programs, and services to assure that not only do they meet the letter of the law, but that they also serve as exemplars in the pursuit of cultural equity.
  • Actively promote diversity among program advisors and participants.

To pursue needed systemic change related to equity, we strive to…

  • Promote diverse cultural leadership throughout the Commonwealth.
  • Encourage constituents and audiences to identify ways to build cultural inclusion and diversity.
  • Measure, track, and share progress on greater and more diverse cultural participation.
  • Advocate for public and private sector policies that promote cultural equity.