As New York Fashion Week approaches, the conversation about racism in fashion has resurfaced. Eric Wilson of The New York Times reports that in 2013, black models accounted for 6 per cent of looks at New York Fashion Week down from 8.2 per cent in 2012.
Iman lent her voice to the issue in an interview with The New York Times. While many pontificate on the cause behind white-washed runways, Iman’s quote focused on action and change.
“It feels to me like the times need a real hard line drawn like in the Sixties, by saying if you don’t use black models, then we boycott,” Iman said. “If you engage the social media, trust me, it will hurt them in their pockets. If you take it out there, they will feel the uproar.”
“There is something terribly wrong. We have a President and a First Lady who are black. You would think things have changed, and then you realise that they have not. In fact, things have gone backwards.”
Iman is wise to suggest that we protest with our dollars and inform other consumers of racist practices via social media. Historically, change doesn’t occur until brands feel it in their pockets. Do you agree?