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The Model Alliance Hopes to Bring Change to the Fashion Industry (Forum Buzz)

Sara Ziff - Founder and Director of The Model AllianceIt’s no secret that the glamorous fashion industry and the modeling world in particular have an underbelly of ugliness that is all too easily dismissed, but The Model Alliance (which was founded and is directed by model Sara Ziff) is seeking to change all of that. Sure, talk about eating disorders, child labor laws, and other abuses in the industry tend to crop up during fashion week, but The Model Alliance is looking to prolong that discussion and eradicate several other issues as well. Here is their mission as they state it:

“The Model Alliance believes that models deserve fair treatment in their workplace, and we aim to establish ethical standards that bring real and lasting change to the fashion industry as a whole. We support the enforcement of existing child labor and contract laws, promote financial transparency and redress for issues of sexual harassment, recognize that all models have the right to complete their compulsory schooling, and encourage a safe and healthy work environment that protects models’ mental and physical wellbeing.”

In addition to their Mission Statement, the Model Alliance has set goals to prioritize for the Fall 2012 season. One of the goals is the introduction of a Backstage Privacy Policy that would protect models from having unauthorized photos taken of them while they are changing backstage at fashion shows and then having said photos subsequently crop up on the Internet. Another goal is Model Alliance Support, a confidential grievance support system for models looking for advice in relation to unwanted sexual advances. Last but not least, The Model Alliance aims to draft a Models’ Bill of Rights “to empower models to demand fair treatment from agencies and clients.”

The more information models have at their fingertips, the better. Fashion can be a scary and intimidating industry to navigate, and often these girls are doing it at a young age where they could highly benefit from some guidance. The Model Alliance, in addition to all of the great goals listed above, at its core wants to arm models with knowledge, and they do this through a daily feed on their website with industry news and a forum featuring first person essays from models about topics ranging from financial transparency to scaling back on modeling to pursue higher education.

“Seems like a great thing,” iluvjeisa commented. Indeed it does. It can’t hurt that big name model Coco Rocha, who is also very social media savvy and active, is on the Advisory Board to lend her support. Let's hope this alliance ushers in an new era or awareness, support and empowerment.

Image: Sara Ziff – modelalliance.org 

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