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POLICY 31

Creative Workers: Provide creative workers with the resources and opportunities to thrive.

The 2015 Minneapolis Creative Index report noted that creative sales contributed $4.5 Billion into Minneapolis’ economy--nearly eight times the size of Minneapolis’ sports sector revenues.  Creative jobs in Minneapolis have grown by 10.4% since 2006 and are represented in 72 different industries. The city is home to 26% of the region’s creative workforce and responsible for 50% of the region’s creative revenues. These facts demonstrate the importance of supporting the growth and sustainability of the creative sector to maintaining Minneapolis’ economic competitiveness.

The creative sector is unique with creative individuals frequently making up their income by combining contracted opportunities in the private sector and grant opportunities funded by the in the public and nonprofit sectors.  Nonprofit organizations and small creative businesses also straddle these two worlds, combining nonprofit and for-profit revenue streams in order to operate. 

While the creative sector is often cited as an important factor to promoting the City on a global scale, growth in this sector faces particular challenges, as small creative businesses often do not fit traditional small business models, and are configured differently in terms of their labor force and capital infrastructure.  To sustain the creative sector the resources that support small businesses need to be tailored and targeted to these unique circumstance and needs.      

Racial disparities that persist in Minneapolis’ economy also persist in the creative sector economy.  People of color make up a lower percentage of workers in creative occupations compared to all metropolitan area workers--nine percent versus fourteen. Compared nationally, people of color make of 17 percent of the creative workers and 26 percent of all workers nationwide. Work is needed to ensure Minneapolis’ successful creative sector and economy can create opportunity for people of color.

ACTION STEPS

The City will seek to accomplish the following action steps to provide creative workers with the resources and opportunities to thrive.

  1. Partner with and enhance the capacity of arts and cultural service organizations to support creative workers.
  2. Raise awareness about the field’s inequities and push the field to value greater diversity and inclusion.
  3. Provide training to and build the capacity of emerging artists.
  4. Focus on artists of color through public art, business training, affordable housing, and professional development.
  5. Engage people of color in providing training and mentorship.
  6. Strengthen the capacity of artists and other creative entrepreneurs to earn revenue.
  7. Provide opportunities for artists and other creative entrepreneurs to sell their work and engage the community.
  8. Cultivate places where young people of color can engage in hands-on learning from people who look like them.
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