BBC is receiving flak from public after the news of it banning white people from applying for trainee position on Springwatch. It is said to have allowed only people from ethnic minorities to apply for the position that will pay nearly $25,000 [£18,000].
This is a one-year trainee production management position in BBC based in Glasgow. Currently blacks, Asian and ethnically diverse candidates can apply for the job. The broadcaster's decision is being criticized and termed as positive discrimination.
Under Equality of Act 2010, positive discrimination is illegal, but if the broadcaster terms it as positive action, then it will not be considered unlawful. Because provision of positive action is given to companies to select candidates for trainee and internship roles, in case there is under-representation.
Creative Access posted the job requirement. It can be noted that the company strives towards helping the ethnic minorities to get work in the creative, media and arts industries. Those selected for the trainee position can work on shows including Springwatch, The One Show and The Truth About series.
The Mail stated that according to Creative Access, someone with a desire to build a career in the TV industry and a demonstrable interest in BBC Studios will be considered for the job. A spokesperson from BBC told The Mail: "The BBC is a welcoming, inclusive organisation committed to representing and reflecting our audiences. We support a scheme organised by Creative Access, an independent organisation dedicated to increasing diversity in the creative industries, which provides development roles, fully in line with the Equality Act."
BBC's Perspective VS Criticism
BBC's Diversity and Inclusion Plan had stated that BBC aims at making the workforce consist of 50 percent women, 20 percent black and ethnic minority and 12 percent disabled. Under the plan BBC also aims at offering jobs to those at mid-career level in the other sectors of society that have been not represented properly. Through this BBC wants to improve social mobility. Speaking in this regard, BBC director general Tim Davie told The Mail: 'We must – from top to bottom – represent the audiences we serve."
Former member of the London Assembly, David Kurtain, criticized BBC's decision and tweeted, "RACISM: No whites may apply for £18,000 BBC trainee job," and demanded to defund the BBC. Many tweeted against the decision with demands to Cancel the BBC, and cancel the tv license while calling BBC Racist.
Netizens have commented that this decision is not acceptable. A Twitterati commented: "Anyone remember the days when it was illegal to advertise jobs that discriminated people from applying based on their skin colour?! I thought it was STILL illegal to do this..but clearly the @BBC thinks it's ok!" The Mail reported that according to The Taxpayers' Alliance, the BBC licence fee is an unfair tax on people who are already taxpayers.