Siegal & RichardsonLLP

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Diverse writers and workplace discrimination

Writers in California who work or want to work in the television industry may be interested in knowing that 64 percent of diverse writers in the industry have been victims of harassment, discrimination or bias, according to a new report. The same report states that some of the writers' experiences included having their pitches denied only to find that a non-diverse writer would offer the same proposal and would be accepted.

Fifty-eight percent of the writers stated that they were victims of microaggressions in the writers' rooms and that when they would propose a diverse story line or non-stereotypical diverse character, they would experience resistance. Yet, when a non-diverse writer would later offer the same pitch, it would be accepted.

The report was created to closely examine how writers who work in Hollywood managed in the writers' rooms as non-binary, women, people of color, LGBTQ, or disabled persons. The results of the report indicate that many of the diverse people hired were done so in order to fulfill a quota and did not have sufficient opportunities to grow in their careers.

The writers who participated in in the survey consisted of 14 percent disabled persons, 32 percent LGBTQ, 67 percent people of color and 68 percent of non-binary or women. The percentage of writers who claimed membership in the Writers Guild of America totaled 83 percent.

An attorney who practices labor and employment law may assist clients who have experienced some form of discrimination, harassment or bias while on the job. A lawyer may consider the factors of each case and file charges with the appropriate agencies. Financial compensation may be pursued on behalf of clients who have been denied promotions or have experienced overt bias because of their gender or race.

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