The ABC has brought in new guidelines for the commissioning of new programming so as to ensure Australia’s full diversity is reflected on our screens.
The guidelines apply to all externally produced series ordered by two major divisions of the public broadcaster: entertainment and specialist, and regional and local.
Underrepresented Australians from communities will find a new voice, with gender diversity, Indigenous Australians, culturally and linguistically diverse communities, people living with a disability, and the LGBTQI+ community all being highlighted.
According to the ABC’s statement:
“The guidelines, which cover content commissioned across genres such as drama, comedy, children’s, factual and entertainment programs, will enrich the public broadcaster’s content by giving a platform to different voices, subjects and talent.”
Sally Riley, the head of ABC’s drama, comedy, and Indigenous programming, told the Sydney Morning Herald that the guidelines would benefit all ABC viewers:
“It makes our stories richer and more interesting.”
“I want to change hearts and minds and the way to do that is to emotionally engage our audience with authentic stories. It will also be amazing for people from diverse backgrounds to see themselves portrayed on our screens.
Australia is constantly changing and we need to reflect that on the ABC.”