WIFT Australia releases Raising Films Australia Screen Industry Survey SAFC announces sweeping changes in response (12 October 2018)October 12 2018
The Raising Films Australia Screen Industry Survey report, Honey, I Hid the Kids!: Experiences of parents and careres in the Australian Screen Industry released today reveal significant challenges to being a working parent or carer in the screen industry, with 74% of respondents reporting the impact of caring work on their role in the industry as negative.
60% of carers within the industry are freelance or self-employed and state that long hours, financial uncertainty and unpredictable work commitments are the major concerns.
Experiences reported include people hiding the fact that they have children, people taking on more than a full-time load in order to survive, through to those who have had to leave the industry altogether, resulting in an industry-wide loss of knowledge and expertise.
As stated in the report “Freelancers, the majority of the industry’s production workforce, already operate outside conventional maternity leave entitlements and guaranteed return-to-work provisions. This, in addition to fear that employers will discriminate against carers, contributes to a screen industry culture that lacks transparency and that limits the opportunity for open discussion about workplace flexibility or broader industrial innovation.”
Megan Riakos, President of Women in Film and TV (WIFT) NSW and Board Member, WIFT Australia states, “The survey findings are a call out to the screen industry to recognise the impact parenting and caring is having on the careers and livelihood of those working in the sector, especially women. The facts and figures give us the evidence we need to drive change to not only support working parents, but to enact a more inclusive industry that benefits us all. I look forward to working in collaboration with the sector to achieve this change.”
In response to the report’s findings Courtney Gibson, CEO of the SAFC said “Enabling parents and carers to find working conditions that match their capacity to work will safeguard our investment in screen practitioners and preserve the vital cultural output of Australia’s screen industries. Not caring about caring is simply not an option anymore.”
Further, the South Australian Film Corporation (SAFC) today announced a range of initiatives designed to make it possible to have a continually evolving career in the screen sector and be a carer at the same time.