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News May 17, 2021

Australian industry to gather to discuss cultural change amid #MeToo movement

Australian industry to gather to discuss cultural change amid #MeToo movement

Representatives from the Australian music industry are set to gather next week to discuss cultural change amid #MeToo movement.

Taking place in Sydney on Monday May 24th, and lead by ARIA, APRA AMCOS and PPCA, the initial discussion from a diverse group from all sectors of the music industry has one purpose: to create effective long-term cultural change.

The discussion was sparked by multiple instances of sexual assault, harassment and discrimination in the Australian music industry as its #MeToo movement ramps up.

Last week TIO and The Project exposed serious wrongdoings in Australia’s music business. TIO‘s investigative piece took a deep dive into the revealing new research by Dr. Jeff Crabtree on the extent of sexual assault against women and gender-related assault in the Australian music industry.

The invitation to join the discussion included the commitment to launch “an industry-wide program of cultural change made up of a range of initiatives to address sexual harm, harassment, and systemic discrimination in the workplace”.

In her invitation email, ARIA CEO Annabelle Herd said:

“There will be many people across the industry who are experienced and committed who will become involved and this meeting is not about excluding anyone, it is simply a small first step on what will no doubt be a long and challenging path.

“We expect one outcome of this meeting will be a broader facilitated roundtable with a much wider range of participants.”

In a statement regarding Dr. Jeff Crabtree’s research, APRA AMCOS CEO Dean Ormston said:

“APRA AMCOS wants to be part of a music industry that upholds a high level of professional respect, conduct and integrity, and does not condone any form of discrimination, harassment, or bullying.

“We recognise and accept that we have work to do in this space. To that end, we’ve been working with industry colleagues to start a cross-industry coalition that will be meeting later this month to look at how we partner to address these issues. This work will build on the learnings from our SoundCheck Aotearoa colleagues in New Zealand.”

ARIA’s Annabelle Herd, who took on the top role at the record label’s association in late January, released a statement the day TIO‘s article was released:

“There has been a lot of discussion in recent months about the treatment of women in the workplace and generally in Australian society. Anecdotal and other evidence has suggested for a while that our industry is no different, and the research of Dr Jeff Crabtree shows this is indeed the case.

“It’s important that our industry comes together to take action and create lasting change. Like all industries and sectors, music must be a safe, inclusive, and respectful environment and workplace for women and for everyone.

“While I have not been at ARIA and PPCA for long, the work has already begun. I am determined and passionate about making a real difference in this area, and our organisations are more than happy to take a leading role in bringing the industry together for this conversation and for action.”  

This article originally appeared on The Industry Observer, which is now part of The Music Network.


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