Loisaida & the NYC Cultural Plan

Download the complete report: Loisaida_Cultural_Plan


After years of cultural equity activism the New York City Council finally heard the many voices of those across the boroughs that felt marginalized and with little access to the arts and cultural scene and resources in this City. This year, the New York City Council will approve the City’s first-ever comprehensive 10-year cultural plan that will overlay all aspects of policy, program, and resource allocation going forward.

To this end the Council, the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, and key partners, such as the New York City Cultural Agenda Fund in The New York Community Trust, have charged all New Yorkers to make their voices and priorities heard on all aspects of cultural life in their neighborhoods and how to make it better, more equitable, and fulfilling.

We at Loisaida Inc. with the support, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the City Council have been hard at work developing strategy, and implementing our own local process to yield ideas and make solid recommendations to inform and integrate into the larger priority planning process that is taking place all over New York City right now! Loisaida’s own working definition of cultural equity isto achieve fairness in opportunities such as access to information, financial resources, and programming for cultural organizations, workers, and participants.

At Loisaida we aim to confront these structural cultural inequities by strongly representing the richness of our community’s all too often underestimated and underfunded arts groups and highlighting their significant cultural capacity, competence, and impact.

Below you will see the events and activities organized to engage community residents, cultural workers, and arts and cultural group members in this important planning process so that our Lower East Side voices ring loud to ensure the vitality of our cultural imprint and the sustainability of our arts groups, cultural workers and the dimension that they bring to our neighborhood. All of intricate importance to develop our recommendations to the City Council.

In these times of troubling uncertainties regarding equity and fairness, we at Loisaida recommit ourselves to build solidarity and to create a model for community building and engagement to fiercely proclaim the vital role of arts and culture in community development and the freedom of expression that celebrates the ideals of what Loisaida has always been about.


Download the complete report: Loisaida_Cultural_Plan


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Loisaida’s Cultural Policy Development Process:

1. Fill out the surveys: [Artists & Cultural Workers – Lower Manhattan Community Residents]

2. Participate in one of our several focus groups. Lead by effective facilitators to discuss and get your feedback on issues faced by Latino/a/x and other people of color, marginalized artists / cultural workers and communities. Food and refreshments will be provided.

*If possible, we ask that participants let us know the top three issues that are most important to you when it comes to Arts & Culture in NYC. Fill out the form: [here]


Other events important to Loisaida’s Cultural Plan Development:

        • Tuesday, Jan 17th: Talk with Commissioner from the Department of Consumer Affairs…
          Let the DCA know about your concerns and learn about cultural worker rights, assistance for immigrant undocumented artists, licensing and taxing issues related to entrepreneurs, small businesses and cultural organizations.
        • Wednesday, Jan 18th: The Loss of Cultural Facilities and Sanctuaries in the LES…
          The issue of how vacant or underused community facilities have played a role on the dismantling and “de-culturalizing” economic dynamic of historical Latino Core Neighborhoods comes to the foreground as neighbors and community partners
          discuss the future of PS.64/ CHARAS El Bohio and the strategies to convert them into cultural resources that strengthen and fully represent the historical and diverse fabric of the Lower East Side.
        • Thursday, Feb 9th: Walled Worlds: Border Publics, Cultural Activism and Urban Planning.
          Renowned scholars, artists, cultural activists and critics––Ricardo DominguezTeddy CruzFonna Forman and Ed Morales––converge to discuss their distinct yet cross-cultural geopolitical perspectives on the intersections of arts and culture, activism and policy, and forced migration. We will consider how might our cultural activism, advocacy, and participatory planning begin working to create stronger collaborative movements and build solidarity within and beyond our multiple communities? In the face of political uncertainties, we will also consider what tactics and strategies work to strengthen cultural equity advocacy, to influence policy and to advance equity principles as part of what should be enshrined in NYC’s cultural plan. A report-back on the discussion will be included as a set of recommendations to the New York City Council’s 10 year Cultural Plan.
        • Wednesday, March 1st: Our Voices Ring Loud Town Hall Loisaida Inc. leads the local cultural planning project, in partnership with the Clemente Soto Vélez Cultural & Educational Center and Teatro SEA that will ensure that Latino arts organizations, cultural workers, and residents in Lower Manhattan are heard and their recommendations included in the City’s 10 year cultural plan. Loisaida Inc. was chosen from a competitive pool of applicants as one of the winning proposals to conduct community engagement and feed-back activities around the City’s cultural planning process, which will wrap up in the late spring of 2017. Be Heard! Participate!

Some facts about the Cultural Plan:


Loisaida Inc. was chosen from a competitive pool of applicants as one of the winning proposals to conduct community organizing activities around the City’s cultural planning process, which began in the fall of 2016 and will wrap up in the late spring of 2017.

Loisaida Inc. leads the local cultural planning project in partnership with Clemente Soto Vélez Cultural & Educational Center and Teatro SEA that will ensure that Latino arts communities in Lower Manhattan are included in the City’s cultural plan.


This program is supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the City Council.


This Loisaida-led Project to Help Inform New York City’s Cultural Plan is Funded by:

New York City Cultural Agenda Fund in The New York Community Trust.