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San Francisco trialling initiative paying local artists $1,000 per month

Creatives in the city will recieve the first portion of funds in May

The City and County of San Francisco has launched a new initiative, paying local artists $1,000 per month to support the city's creative community.

Launching in May this year, the city of San Francisco's new pilot program in universal basic income will run for six months, funding artists working in music, dance, creative writing, visual art, performance art, installation, photography, theater, and film. Each of the 130 artists selected will be given $1,000 per month (£725) to fund their practice.

After San Francisco Mayor London Breed announced the Garaunteed Income pilot last Thursday (25th), Chief Executive Officer of the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (YBCA), Deborah Cullinan, told the San Francisco Chronicle that "there are people living in challenging circumstances right now" and that the city wants to "move as quickly as we can to get them the resources they need.”

To apply for the fund you must be aged 18 or over, and reside in the San Francisco zip code, and the program are also aiming to support artists primarily from marginalized communities.

"Though the Pilot is focused on all artists facing financial insecurity resulting from the pandemic, we are building a comprehensive and community-centered outreach strategy that ensures we reach those hardest hit, including our BIPOC, Immigrant, Disabled, and LGBTQ+ artist communities," the fund's policy states. "This outreach strategy reflects San Francisco’s Cultural Equity Endowment Legislation and the Grantmakers in the Arts’ Racial Equity in Arts Funding Statement of Purpose."

Applications for the funds are open now and will close on the 15th April. You can read more about the pilot program and how to apply here.

In September last year, in response to the financial impact of COVID-19 on artists and nonprofit arts organisations, The City of Oakland, California launched a new initiative titled CARES.

California's rave history is rooted in outdoor free parties that celebrated psychedelic music and and unique environments. In 2019, DJ Mag's Matt Anniss spoke with the Bay Area DJs and soundsystem crews who started it all, and shaped how contemporary West Coast artists get down today.

(Photo: Halcyon, San Francisco via Facebook)