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TV broadcasters 'failing to represent society' says Ofcom report

From BBC - September 14, 2017

Broadcasters are failing to represent society with a lack of diversity among staff, Ofcom has warned.

The broadcasting watchdog says women, ethnic minority groups and disabled people are all under-represented.

Its chief executive Sharon White said many of the "shocking" results will "concern the whole industry".

Ofcom's report looked at how the TV industry - focusing on the BBC, ITV, Channel 4, Sky and Channel 5 owners Viacom - can improve.

White said the report "paints a worrying picture, with many broadcasters failing properly to monitor the make-up of their employees".

She added that "too many people from minority groups struggle to get into television", which "creates a cultural disconnection between the people who make programmes, and the many millions who watch them".

'Step-change needed'

The report found that across the five main broadcasters, women accounted for 48% of the total workforce - compared with 51% across the general population - and held 39% of senior roles.

Ofcom also said those from a black, African or ethnic minority background made up 12% of workers, and disabled people just 3%, despite accounting for 14% and 18% of the general population respectively.

And their research found that lots of people felt there are not enough programmes on TV that "authentically portray their lives and communities".

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