Phew! The unions are on it

As if the scarcity of roles for black actors in Britain wasn’t bad enough, those who are cast in TV productions often find their hair and makeup needs are being ignored or at worst abused.

A new campaign to tackle inequality in behind-the-camera treatment has been launched by Peggy-Ann Fraser, a black actor. She is aiming to expose the mistreatment of black actors, and calling for better hair and makeup training, as well as greater employment for black hair and makeup artists.

Indeed, quite vital, fortunately it’s already being solved:

Fraser, who is on the black-members committee of the broadcasting union Bectu, has also won the backing of Equity, the entertainment-industry union, to examine the issue and decide what action to take. Equalities and diversity organiser Hamida Ali said: “Equity members met with Bectu’s hair-and-makeup branch last October and drew up a plan of action including looking at training and workshops, policy and guidance and the diversity of hair and makeup professionals.”

Equity and Bectu aim to “plug the knowledge gap that exists among industry professionals about black skin and hair”, through a week-long pilot or taster course due to start towards the end of 2017, led by black makeup and hair-care specialists.

So file this under problems diagnosed and solved then, eh? After all, the unions have got this, haven’t they?

17 comments on “Phew! The unions are on it

  1. I feel sorry for all these millions of black and brown people who were brought to the UK against their will and have no way of escaping this vile, white supremacist, racist, hellhole.
    They should be warning potential 3rd world immigrants not to come here because life is impossible unless you’re white.

  2. Imagine reading this:

    “Fraser, who is on the white-members committee of the broadcasting union Bectu …”

  3. So, American telly is full of Black (and other-hued) British actors making millions. Even average black actors can benefit from ‘colour-blind’ casting in the London theatre.

    But Ms Fraser’s lack of work is all down to racist attitudes towards her hair. Definitely not because of failings in the talent or looks department.

  4. We are always hearing how hideously racist Britain is, yet the examples the Guardian digs up after years of desperate searching are nanotrivia such as this.

    Anyway, will this be the scandal that brings May’s government finally crashing down? See Twitter for details.

  5. hmm. its the way they link hair and make up training as part of a campaign against mistreatment. Luvvies they’re all the same.

  6. As if the scarcity of roles for black actors in Britain wasn’t bad enough, those who are cast in TV productions often find their hair and makeup needs are being ignored or at worst abused.

    How can “hair and makeup needs be abused”? What the hell does that mean?

    I love how this article desperately tries to make out black people are being chained to each other and forced to work sixteen hours in the cotton field, but in fact all that’s happening is a camp black actor is having a tantrum because the brand of hairspray isn’t the exact one he is used to using.

  7. Mind you, Thandie Newton blames being black, a woman and middle-aged for not getting enough work. Poor old Fraser would give anything for 1/50th of the work, fame and cash that poor abused Thandie has had.

  8. Just think of all the jobs there used to be for blacks – like the Black and White Minstrels Show – where there weren’t enough blacks to do the job and they had to black up white guys!

  9. The problem really is that most British scriptwriters are white middle-class public school boys, so their idea of a black character is some guy with a tea cosy on his head.
    No wonder there’s a mass exodus to America, where the wage packets are higher

    Also make-up artists are pretty skilled people, isnÄt this a bit of an insult ?

  10. Agreed, JuliaM. Now that blacks are engaged in first world problems, all government programs can be ended.

  11. I also think it would be a good idea to address the black-members committee of the broadcasting union Bectu to advise them that it’s not a good idea to talk about how the sausage is made. Public discussion of hair and makeup is bad for business.

    Acting involves the willing suspension of disbelief. Telling the audiences that it’s all fake and made up is dumb.

  12. The article is a gold mine.

    As if the scarcity of roles for black actors in Britain wasn’t bad enough

    Lol.

    No wat, that was unworthy. They are right (shakes head in disappointment). What can be done?

  13. As if the scarcity of roles for black actors in Britain wasn’t weren’t bad enough.

    Bad hair and bad make-up is of course very upsetting but it is no excuse for bad grammar.

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