Sky unveils new targets to improve BAME representation

Sky today announces stretching new targets to improve the representation of black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) people across its entertainment channels. The targets are designed to ensure that programmes on Sky 1, Sky Atlantic, Sky Living and Sky Arts better reflect the diversity of Sky’s 10.7 million TV customers in Britain and Ireland. In addition, as the fastest-growing source of investment in original British programming, Sky wants to play a leading role in making the television industry more accessible to talented people from all backgrounds.

Sky’s new targets address the diversity of talent both on screen and behind the camera. To drive real and sustainable change, Sky will work closely with companies from the independent production sector to seek out and nurture new talent.

By the end of 2015, Sky aims to achieve the following targets for the new programmes it commissions for its entertainment channels.

On Screen Portrayal

All brand new, non-returning shows on Sky entertainment channels will have people from BAME backgrounds in at least 20% of significant on-screen roles. This commitment covers all genres of programmes, including drama, comedy, entertainment and factual.

Production

All of Sky’s original programmes will have someone with a BAME background in at least one senior production role. This is aimed at providing more opportunities for people with BAME backgrounds to reach senior positions within the production community.

Writing

20% of writers* on all shows will be from BAME backgrounds in order to promote a greater diversity of voices in Sky programmes and scripts.

Commissioning

Sky will also be offering a 12 month placement within our commissioning team as part of the Creative Diversity Network’s Commissioning Leadership Programme.

Stuart Murphy, Sky’s Director of Entertainment said:
“Sky is dedicated to making programmes that feel representative of every one of the millions of viewers that watch our content every day, whatever their colour. So we have tackled the issue with the same sense of ambition that we show in all other areas of our business, setting ourselves a set of tangible goals that will hold us to account. Our aim is to kick start a sea change in the on screen representation of ethnic minorities on British television. It’s an incredibly exciting time, and I am very proud that Sky is going to be at the forefront.”

Sky will continue to work closely with the CDN, which recently also unveiled its cross broadcaster plans.