British Broadcasters Must ‘Redouble Efforts’ on Diversity, Media Regulator Says

Variety | 9/18/2019 | Robert Mitchell
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With progress on diversity in the television workforce appearing to slow, British broadcasters must “redouble their efforts” to improve the situation across the industry, the U.K.’s media regulator said.

In its third annual report into diversity and equal opportunities in the British TV sector, Ofcom said that in the past year there had been “no discernible change in the TV industry’s diversity profile” with regard to women, minorities and people with disabilities in the workforce. The standstill comes after encouraging progress the year before, in 2017-18.

TV - Industry - Differences - Door - Sharon

“We want a TV industry where differences are celebrated, and the door is open to all,” Sharon White, Ofcom’s outgoing chief executive, said Wednesday. “But the evidence shows that the dial towards full inclusivity is not shifting quickly enough, and we cannot allow progress to stall.”

The new Ofcom report found that, for the second year running, the proportion of women working in television had fallen and remained below the national average of 47%. In the TV sector, women made up only 45% of the workforce in 2018-19, a 1% drop year-on-year. The result comes despite higher proportions of female employees at leading broadcasters Channel 4 (57%), ITV (54%) and Viacom, which owns Channel 5 (53%). The BBC’s workforce is 44% female, while Sky stands at 39%.

Proportion - Employees - Color - Disability - %

The proportion of employees of color or who have a disability remains unchanged year-on-year at 13% and 6%, respectively, after having notched notable increases between 2016’s first report (11% and 3%) and 2017-18. While ethnic diversity in the British TV industry remains slightly above the national average, people with disabilities remain poorly represented in the TV workforce. At 6%, it is just one third the national average of 18%.

Viacom boasts the greatest ethnic diversity (20%) among the five major...
(Excerpt) Read more at: Variety
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