Diversity in the BBC Backbench Business Debate, House of Commons

14 April 2016

We welcome this debate on the important issue of increasing diversity in the BBC. In Britain we can be proud that we are global leaders in broadcasting. In our view, increasing diversity in the industry – both on and off air – is vital to maintaining this position of excellence.

The broadcasting industry has long been aware of the need to increase diversity. The business case is clear - attracting the best, most diverse range of talent will ultimately lead to better content and higher ratings. This will also help make Britain fairer - broadcasting has a unique role in shaping and reflecting our society’s values.

As the UK’s biggest content provider, and a global brand which influences how British culture and values are perceived worldwide, the BBC is uniquely placed to lead the way in promoting diversity. Additionally, as a publicly owned body, like Channel 4, it has a duty under the Equality Act 2010 to have due regard to the need to tackle discrimination and promote equality of opportunity within its own organisation and within the organisations with which it contracts.

The forthcoming BBC Charter renewal provides an important opportunity to drive real improvement and to position the BBC as a world-leader in delivering diversity.

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Last updated: 22 Apr 2016