Saturday, April 4, 2015

Model Restrictions

Ever thought you could go to jail for employing the wrong size person? Sounds like an interesting new law right? Indeed it is and for the overly body conscious women and girls out there, it could be a life saver.

The French parliament has passed a measure that bans modeling agencies and fashion brands from employing models the government deems too thin. Now models will be required to present medical documentation of a body mass index (BMI) of at least 18, Reuters reports. People who employ models who fail to meet the requirement could face six months in prison and a fine of $82,417. Can you say WOW?!? 

This is all in an effort to discourage the use of ultra thin models and unhealthy practices, and now Denmark is looking to do the same, according to the New York Times. Rather than go through government channels, the Danish Fashion Ethical Charter is a document written with the help of Danish fashion organizations, eight model agencies, a eating disorder support group and model union. The document includes guidelines like annual health checkups, an age limit of 16 for models and healthy food available at shoots.

So what are the penalties in Denmark? For brands looking to be a part of Copenhagen Fashion Week, they must sign the charter. If brands continually go against the guidelines, they will be kicked out. And ultimately, perpetrators will be publicly shamed with a blacklist posted online. Ouch! 
If you've been watching Israel, Denmark and France are a bit behind the game. Ultra-skinny models have been confined to history following a law that went into effect in Israel at the beginning of 2013.
Only healthy looking models with a Body Mass Index of more than 18.5, have been able to work there. Not to mention Vogue banned too skinny, underaged models from their pages in 2012. With this currently being such a hot topic once again, will the U.S. finally follow its own laws as well?

Well readers, what do you think? Is this a move that's long overdue or one that could be very intrusive of designers' freedoms of creativity? I'm all for anything that promotes health personally. Being healthy is number one about fashion and whatever promotes love of self and individuality, for me, also promotes love of the brand being represented.

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