From time to time we’re pleased to publish adverts from Creative Access for traineeships with large media organisations like ITV, BBC, Apple, Channel 4 and many others.
These traineeships are only open to candidates young people from black, Asian and other non-white minority ethnic (BAME) backgrounds, as well as those with a lower socioeconomic status (SES), and we get queries from those who consider such adverts discriminatory or racist and believe they may be illegal.
This is not the case.
These are not permanent jobs but trainee positions, and anyone completing them will have to apply for a job with the company in the normal way – they do not provide a shortcut. The Equality Act makes it clear that employers can take steps to help people with a particular protected characteristic overcome their disadvantage – for example, by offering internships or placements, and that they may encourage the participation of people with a particular protected characteristic in employment or training – for example, by reserving places on a training course. This role falls under these criteria and is therefore completely within the law.
There is a well-documented lack of representation of BAME people in the UK’s creative industries. Figures from the last British census, published in 2011, and Creative Skillset’s 2012 Employment Census showed that the UK was 14% non-white and London’s population was over 40% BAME. Yet BAME representation across the creative industries had fallen to just 5.4%.
Citizens Advice has a useful guide to the law in this area and the Creative Access website lists its employer partners, all of whom have checked that this approach is legal.
We continue to post a wide range of jobs and opportunities that are likely to be of interest to MPs staff.