Visual Artists Newfoundland and Labrador Question Possible Changes to the Rooms Act

For Immediate Release:

December 6th, 2016:    Members of Visual Artists Newfoundland and Labrador (VANL-CARFAC) are expressing concern over the imminent changes to the Rooms Act with the impending passage of Bill 56, which, according to the wording of the bill would repeal and replace the current Rooms Act, making substantial changes to the corporation’s structure. According to Bill 56, these changes would include “removing the requirement for separate divisions and directors for the archives, museum and art gallery.”

“We would like to know the reasoning behind such a major change, and how the community was consulted,” said David Andrews, Executive Director of Visual Artists Newfoundland and Labrador.  “The Rooms Act was originally created, in part, through a major public and stakeholder consultation process, and there is an article, written into the Act itself, stating the need to consult the public regarding the strategic plan and major activities.”

The Rooms Act was created in 2005 to merge the Provincial Archives, the Provincial Art Gallery, and the Provincial Museum into a single entity—the Rooms Corporation—and outlines the structure, purpose and activities of the organization.

Andrews, goes on to say: “There are some disturbing omissions in the new Act, that raise serious concerns about the impact that this restructuring could potentially have on the Art Gallery.  We’ve requested a meeting with Minister Mitchelmore and hope to get some clarification on these changes and how the consultation process was enacted.”

The text of Bill 56 can be found at:

For media requests or more information, contact Tessa Graham at the VANLoffices, 709-738-7303 or