Bectu welcomes report into working conditions in film and TV

16 February 2022

Bectu, the union for the creative industries, today welcomes the publication of the Film and TV Charity’s Looking Glass ’21 report.

Silhouette of a TV cameraman

The new report, a follow-up to the charity’s 2019 research, provides a picture of working conditions in the film and TV industry and how these impact workers, based on responses from more than 2,000 workers.

Bectu shares the report’s concerns around major issues including working hours, harassment, and talent retention, and the continuation of the industry’s ‘mental health crisis’ uncovered in the 2019 findings.

However, important notes of hope are evident in this new research and demonstrate the continued need for concerted collaboration to secure a better future for the industry and its workforce. Bectu echoes the report’s assertion that change comes from action and urges the industry to commit to lasting change.

Bectu’s soon-to-be-released mental health and wellbeing policy for companies working in the film and TV sector, written by and for members of Bectu, is an important step towards this change. The Film and TV Charity’s Whole Picture Toolkit for mentally healthy productions, co-designed with industry workers, is further evidence of positive collaboration.

Alongside Bectu’s campaigning work, including its 6 demands to help tackle harassment and bullying harassment in the film and TV industry, Bectu hopes these initiatives and more will help address the ongoing mental health crisis in film and TV and help leave many of the report’s damning statistics in the past.

Head of Bectu Philippa Childs said:

“Bectu welcomes the publication of this important research that lays bare the daily realities for too many of the UK’s film and TV workers – untenable hours, endemic racism and persistent bullying and harassment.

“With only 10% of respondents agreeing that the industry is currently a mentally healthy place to work, it’s clear that these issues are driving skilled workers out of the industry and action is needed now.

“However, it’s certainly not all doom and gloom. The film and TV industry is full of inspiring, dedicated people committed to bringing about lasting change and we share the report’s cautious optimism that the tide may be beginning to turn on mental health in the industry.

“It is now the responsibility of everyone working in the film and TV industry to work constructively to follow through on commitments made to improving mental health and wellbeing and working conditions.

“Bectu will always work to stamp out bullying, harassment, discrimination and fight for better working conditions. Today’s report is a reminder that the industry truly is stronger together and only if everyone plays their part can we start to see real, tangible change.”