Music industry has ‘tidal wave’ of sexual abuse cases
The Women and Equalities Committee have opened an inquiry into ‘misogyny in music’ in relation to their work regarding preventing violence against women. The aim of the inquiry is to reveal how misogynistic culture in the music industry can infiltrate into wider society, with an end goal of proposing measures that will eventually alter the attitudes and treatment of women in the industry.
In a recent evidence hearing, the Committee heard from Annie Macmanus and Rebecca Ferguson, two women with successful careers in the industry. Revelations from the hearing told the story of an ‘unregulated’ music industry that has spiralled into a male-dominated system that is ‘rigged against women’. The evidence that was presented in relation to this claim included an abundance of reports of young women being undermined, disrespected, and made to feel unsafe.
Ferguson, who has previously spoken out against the abuse in the industry, concerningly stated that these forms of misogyny are merely the ‘tip of the iceberg’ of issues taking place behind the scenes. This was evidenced by reports of more severe bullying, harassment, and sexual abuse going unnoticed. Revelations of women being abused by men in senior positions continued to arise throughout the hearing, demonstrating that a severe power imbalance exists within the industry. This imbalance has effectively silenced women, leaving many feeling apprehensive to speak up for fear of suffering career repercussions.
Reportedly, a ‘tidal wave’ of harassment and abuse stories are waiting to be told, and appropriate action must now be taken in order to allow women in the music industry to speak out in a safe way. The Women and Equalities Committee are taking steps in the right direction, and it is hopeful that further evidence hearings and media attention will empower women to come forward with their experiences. The abuse and silencing of women in the music industry must be challenged and abolished in order to further the Committee’s pursuit of diminishing violence against women.
If you have been the victim of any form of abuse, harassment, or bullying at work, we encourage you to reach out to Bolt Burdon Kemp for a free and confidential conversation with one of our experts.