CFDA and PVH double down on diversity with new fashion industry report
today Jan 8, 2019
The issue of diversity is a hot topic in the fashion industry at the moment, and The Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) is taking it seriously.
The organization has teamed up with the fashion giant PVH Corp. -- which owns brands such as Calvin Klein and Tommy Hilfiger -- to explore the subject of inclusion and diversity across the US fashion sector. The result is an extensive report dubbed ‘Insider/Outsider' that spans all areas of inclusion and diversity, such as abilities, age, gender, race, ethnicity and sexual orientation.
"We are calling on our colleagues, peers, and consumers to hold American fashion accountable to be inclusive and diverse," the introduction to the report reads. "Inclusion and Diversity (I&D) are inextricably linked. If diversity is the thread, then inclusion is the needle."
According to a questionnaire conducted as part of the research, 41 percent of executive-level employees at fashion companies rated their organization three out of a possible five in terms of the diversity (difference) within their organization. However, 56 percent had taken a professional class or workshop related to I&D in the workplace in the past.
The CFDA and PVH has pledged to focus efforts on making the US fashion industry a more inclusive and diverse sector, concluding: "In 2019, the CFDA will continue the work we have been doing in the area of Inclusion and Diversity. The focus of the work will be on Peer-to-Peer Mentorship, Business Networking Opportunities, Educational Programming and Leadership Skillset Training. At PVH, we will enhance our education and awareness programs, as well as amplifying our I&D Councils and Business Resource Groups. We will continue to collaborate with external partners to help foster a collectively inclusive and diverse environment in our own workplace and across the industry."
The past year has seen multiple major fashion brands champion their diverse credentials. Luxury conglomerate Kering was honored for its commitment to gender equality in November when it won ‘The Most Feminine Board of Directors Award' from the European Women on Boards (EWoB) and Ethics & Boards, while Swedish fast fashion giant H&M appointed its first ‘Head of Inclusion & Diversity for North America' in the same month. And according to The Fashion Spot's latest diversity report, the Spring 2019 catwalk season was the industry's most diverse yet, in terms of model castings.
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