Election candidates are being asked to recognise and campaign to mitigate the strains facing the dance sector.

Photograph of dancers with pleading hands

One Dance UK is calling on all political parties and candidates to commit to supporting dance education and minimising the impact of Brexit on creative workers.

In the run-up to the 2017 general election, dance supporters are being asked to send its Dance Manifesto to their local candidates, or ask them to campaign on specific issues.

Dance should be “an integral part of every young person’s education”, the manifesto says, with the “same status as music, maths and English”. It points out that less than 5% of PE teachers hold a post-A-level qualification in dance, and says investment in more specialist dance teachers in schools is a priority.

Career guidance for students that “fully understands the potential of creative jobs and career pathways” is also identified as a specific need.

In relation to Brexit, the manifesto focuses on immigration and highlights the status of migrant workers from European Union (EU) member states. It says that those in both employed and freelance positions should be eligible to remain and work in the UK.

Should the current points-based immigration system be extended to cover workers from the EU, it proposes an exemption for cultural and creative workers, or “at the very least ensure the shortage occupation list has special arrangements and in particular no or low cost”. The aim would be to secure “reciprocal arrangements to enable cultural exchange without increased bureaucracy or cost to organisations touring in Europe and the UK”.

Liz Hill