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Community museums throughout Ontario are custodians and interpreters of the province's irreplaceable heritage collections. They contribute to our communities' economic well-being as employers and tourist attractions, attracting more than 3 million visitors annually.

Standards for community museums in Ontario outline the minimum functions, responsibilities and activities for the operation of a good community museum.

Approximately 166 community museums which meet the criteria established in Regulation 877, "Grants for Museums," under the Ontario Heritage Act and this ministry's Standards for Community Museums in Ontario receive annual operating grants.

Foreign Cultural Objects Immunity from Seizure Act

Ontario’s museums, art galleries and other cultural or educational institutions often borrow international works of art and cultural objects for temporary exhibitions.

Borrowing institutions may make an application to this ministry to protect the works from potential seizure by court order by others claiming to own the works.

Borrowing institutions are encouraged to begin the application process early as protection may only be granted before the works or objects arrive in Ontario.

The Guidelines and Application package (PDF, 1.5MB) describes the process in detail. The file contains the following:

  • Application Guidelines for Determination under the Foreign Cultural Objects Immunity From Seizure Act
  • Application for Determination under the Foreign Cultural Objects Immunity From Seizure Act
  • Appendix A: Statutory Declaration in the matter of the Foreign Cultural Objects Immunity From Seizure Act

Please contact our FCOISA Coordinator if you need further information or have technical trouble with the forms.

Museum associations