Creative industries dominated by ‘straight, able-bodied white men living in London’, research finds

·1-min read
 (AFP via Getty Images)
(AFP via Getty Images)

The UK’s creative industries are dominated by “a narrow subset” of the population and the pandemic has only made it worse, according to a new report.

Researchers, including academics from Kings College London, found middle class people were twice as likely to work in the creative industries as their working class contemporaries. They also raised issues of a lack of diversity around race, gender, disability and sexuality.

Chi Onwurah MP, who co-chairs the All Party Parliamentary Group for Creative Diversity, said: “For too long the UK’s creative industries have been dominated by a narrow subset of the UK population - a subset that does not represent our country as a whole. The pandemic has only deepened the issue with fewer creative organisations, fewer job opportunities and fewer openings for diverse talent.”

The report, commissioned by the group, said the worlds of TV, film, music and the arts were dominated by “straight, able-bodied white men living in London” despite them only accounting for 3.5% of the population.

It said Government should withhold public funding from bodies that fail to comply with official equality guidelines and says even “the smallest microbusinesses” must set and meet targets for diversity.

It also warned against the use of “unpaid interns” which it said was “a significant barrier to entry and to advancement in creative careers.”

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