ViacomCBS Networks UK has introduced a new “no diversity, no commission” content policy to help promote diversity both on-screen and behind the scenes on the likes of Channel 5.
The policy, which is being communicated to suppliers, was one of six commitments made by ViacomCBS Networks UK and Australia president Maria Kyriacou on Wednesday. The others included:
- Hiring a new commissioning executive responsible for identifying and developing diverse talent
- Creating a new Promotion Opportunity Project, which will identify and support the promotion of BAME talent in the UK production sector
- ViacomCBS will create an Inclusion Board allying its senior leadership team in the UK with its Employee Resource Groups. It will provide quarterly reports on performance
- Introducing a BAME Talent Sponsorship Programme, pairing senior leaders with diverse talent
- Committing to tap into diverse candidate pools for every open vacancy and evolving its internship scheme
Kyriacou said: “Society is now at an inflection point on the issue of systemic racism and as individuals, as a company, we all have a part to play in righting centuries of wrongs. For too long the TV industry has been a relative closed shop and if we are to be of continued relevance to the audiences that we serve, then this must change.”
“Diversity and inclusion is a core company value, yet hearing from our employees over the course of the past few weeks, we know that we can and we must do more to increase representation at all levels. Our commitment to this cannot be overstated. While this raft of new measures is intended to accelerate change, it is by no means a lone stake in the ground. Instead it is a re-emphasis of a strategy that will continue to evolve in the coming weeks, months and years ahead.”
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