April 01, 2019

In 2015, dismayed by the lack of people of color nominated for Oscars, former lawyer April Reign composed a tweet with the hashtag #OscarsSoWhite.

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The #OscarsSoWhite wake-up call is heralded as one catalyst of increasing equality in Hollywood. While there’s still room for improvement, women and people of color led movies in record numbers in 2018.

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Industry observers also credit a certain hiring practice as a catalyst for more equality: the “inclusion rider.”

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Kalpana Kotagal, a partner at the law firm Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll and a co-writer of the inclusion rider, says that activists and advocates have played a key role in documenting the state of entertainment equality.

“We need to have transparency about what’s actually happened so that it can be measured,” says Ms. Kotagal. “And that measurement allows us to show how stagnant the industry has been.”

Embraced by a growing list of stars that includes Michael B. Jordan and Brie Larson, an inclusion rider clause can be inserted into the contracts of sought-after performers to ensure the hiring of more women, people of color, LGBT individuals, people with disabilities, and members of other marginalized communities.

The full article can be accessed here.