Lately, the Telugu Film Industry has been in the news for all the wrong reasons. Following actress Sri Reddy’s complaints of sexual harassment and casting couch, several small-time actresses and women’s rights organisations have come forward demanding better safety measures for women, both in the technical and creative departments.
In a press release, the TFI has issued a set of guidelines with the intention of making the industry a safe and healthy working space for women.
These are the guidelines:
- Setting up of a panel to investigate sexual harassment complaints. The panel will comprise of 50 per cent non-industry members, including doctors, NGOs, psychologists, educationists, ex-government officials for greater transparency.
2. The legal framework of the guidelines for this panel is being prepared by a team of experts.
3. Guidelines have been issued to producers council, MAA, TFDA etc. The guidelines include setting up of Committee Against Sexual Harassment (CASH) as per the Vishakha guidelines, providing toilet facilities and decent changing rooms to junior artists, character artists, doing auditions only in in-camera facilities and in the presence of at least one woman, avoid using profane language in any form of communication etc.
4. Meetings will be conducted with women’s groups within the industry to be able to understand in greater depth their specific issues following which more concrete policies are to be framed.
5. The panel against sexual harassment will also have a direct hotline.
6. Helplines via email, phone, SMS are being/have been set up so that women can easily approach the panel with any complaints.
7. Processes are being put in place to enable licensing of model coordinators so that the candidates are properly vetted and accountable.
8. Counselling will be set up for new actors wishing to enter the TFI.