Black in Fashion Index reveals widespread racial discrimination across industry

A damning new report published by the Black in Fashion Council (BIFC) in partnership with The Human Rights Campaign has revealed black people working in fashion face widespread racial discrimination across all areas of the sector.

Published last month, the Black in Fashion Index unveils the findings of a monumental survey of 30 fashion firms – from large multi-million pound corporations to small independents. Each company was polled anonymously to ensure absolute honestly. The questions covered four key areas: workplace non-discrimination, building an inclusive culture, engaging the black community and corporate social responsibility.

The survey will now take place annually, with each participant taking the Black in Fashion Pledge, which signified a three-year commitment to engage in the survey. The results of each year’s poll will be used to create a yearly report, with the aim to highlight and challenge racist policies and corporate structures that impede the progress and acknowledgement of black people.

The BIFC also offered interested companies the opportunity to take the Active Allyship Pledge, which was intended for those that wanted to officially partner with the BIFC but were not yet ready to commit to the 2021 survey. Regardless of the answers given, participants were provided with educational and informational support resources for each criterion.

BIFC was created by US-based fashion editor Lindsay Peoples Wagner and leading PR executive Sandrine Charles, as a platform to advocate for systemic change in the fashion sector.

“So many companies have realised in the past year that it is not enough to post a black square or quote on MLK Day — the work that we are invested in requires an infrastructural and culture change from companies to intensely interrogate their values and priorities when it comes to DEI,” said Peoples Wagner in a statement.

You can read the full report here.