Brit alleged BBC for showing 'ageism'

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London, Nov 29: The actors union Equity, in Britain, is calling for compulsory audits to ensure that TV, film and theatre companies that receive public funds provide enough roles for older women.

Radical ideas aimed at improving the career chances of women in British television will be published tomorrow in an attempt to shatter the "sexism and ageism" in the entertainment industry.

Its controversial recommendations include government to ensure 40 per cent of key film positions are held by women; monitoring by TV networks to ensure their programmes a gender and age balance.

The former Country file presenter Miriam O'Reilly, 53, is taking legal action against the BBC, claiming she was dumped from the programme because of her age and sex.

There is very little in the UK that shows good practice when it comes to employers," the Independent quoted Equity vice-president, Jean Rogers, as saying.

"We don't exclude ethnic minorities - why exclude older women?," said the presenter Esther Rantzen.

That being said, "there is no doubt that older women are almost unrepresented on TV."


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