The charter aims nurture talent throughout the industry
Channel 4 has unveiled its pioneering new 360° Diversity Charter.
The ambitious plan aims to increase the diversity of Channel 4 staff, from PAs and lawyers to commissioners and on-screen talent, through a number of initiatives.
The broadcaster admits that until now, it has not done enough to nurture diverse talent, particularly people with disabilities and those from ethnic minorities.
Channel 4 is investing over £5 million a year as part of its Charter, with the money going towards a range of projects from the existing Alpha Fund, which provides support to developing diversity within production, and the Channel 4 Growth Fund, which bolsters indies led by people from diverse backgrounds, as well as working with recruitment agencies specialising in the disabled.
Training will also be made compulsory for existing Channel 4 employees to help them understand what is mean by diversity and explain how they can help nurture talent.
A series of commissioning diversity guidelines has been created with the help of Pact and employment lawyers Reed Smith in accordance with the Equalities Act.
The guidelines provide a checklist for commissioners to help ensure diversity both on and off screen.
In-house diversity employment targets show that the broadcaster aims for a 50/50 gender split by 2020, with BAME employees making up 20% of the total staff, as well as 6% LGBT and 6% with disabilities.
The Charter, which can be viewed here, offers a number of proposals to reach these employment targets, from entry-level initiatives such as 4Talent Days to providing support to take those mid-career to senior level positions.
David Abraham, Channel 4's Chief Executive said: "The launch of our 360° Charter is an opportunity for us to change how we think about diversity and ensure that it's at the very heart of everything that we do, on and off-screen.
"It's a complex area but our goal is to create meaningful and long term change and I believe the commitments we're setting out today are a significant moment in the history of Channel 4."
By Pippa Shawley