Call to Conversation – City of Ottawa 2022 Budget

If you’re reading this, you know art is integral to our daily lives and well-being. 

Studies have shown that expressing oneself through art can help with depression, and anxiety while enhancing brain function by impacting our emotions. How is the 2022 Ottawa Budget investing in our mental health, growth and the vibrancy of Ottawa’s arts and culture scene for the benefit of all residents? This is the question that Arts Network Ottawa and Ottawa Arts Councils are asking of our City Council this fall. 

Starting October 13, Councillors are offering consultations with the public on the 2022 city budget.



Arts Network Ottawa and Ottawa Arts Council invite you to join our advocacy campaign to ensure arts support is a priority in the 2022 Budget. We encourage you to engage with your City Councillor and the City of Ottawa Budget process through:

  • Attending public consultation meetings. You can find the date for your ward session here;
  • Emailing your Councillor directly. Find your ward and Councillor contact info here. We encourage you to copy Cassandra ( and Nicole ( on your email to your Councillor; 
  • Engaging through social media [#OttBudgetArts, #CultureCounts], and tagging @ArtsNetOttawa and @ArtsOttawa to amplify your message;
  • Submitting questions and feedback on the budget through Engage Ottawa, the City’s online engagement platform.



Ask your Councillor how arts will be a priority in the 2022 Budget. Here are some guiding questions to help you:

Question: What role do you see culture playing in the reopening and recovery of the City? How is this reflected in the 2022 Ottawa Budget?

Question: What kind of growth or new investments can we expect for the arts in the cultural funding budget specifically, and in the general budget in 2022? 

Why it matters and why we are asking: Cultural events and sites—like festivals, museums, and galleries —play a critical role in the mental health and quality of life of our residents. In fact, seven in ten Ottawans think cultural venues are important for mental health and well-being. They are places where our most vulnerable citizens can feel a little less isolated, make social connections and be stimulated. Culture is more important than ever as we rebuild our economy and recover our communities post-pandemic. 

To learn more about the City Budget process, general budget information and resources are available online at:



The City has posted key dates in the budget process here. The City’s 2022 draft budget will be presented at a Special Meeting of Council on Wednesday, November 3, 10 am and considered for adoption by Council on Wednesday, December 8 at 10 am. 

Look for more updates from us as the City’s 2022 budget process continues, and what it means for our local arts. 



Do you want to secure the future of your arts community? Spread the word by forwarding this email to others, having conversations with your friends and family, mobilizing together, and holding our City Councillor’s accountable, making sure they are best representing the people.


If not us, then who?