The Model Alliance's Industry Survey Finds Nearly 30% of Models Have Been Sexually Harassed and 50% Exposed to Cocaine

The modeling industry is largely unregulated: Models are independent contractors without basic employment rights like workplace protection and minimum age and wage requirements. That's why the Model Alliance, established to improve models' working conditions as well as provide a safe space for models to communicate with one another about their rights, created one of the first surveys we've seen to offer an analysis of models' experiences. "When Sara [Ziff, the founder of the Model Alliance] and I were just starting to think about ways we could organize models, and how we might go about working for fairer labor standards in the industry, we realized we first needed to know how models viewed their working conditions, and where models themselves saw room for improvement," Jenna Sauers, who sits on the board of the Model Alliance, said. "We did the survey because we wanted a map, basically." Granted, the sample size is pretty small (the Alliance sent an anonymous online survey to 241 working models, and only 85 responded) but still, it offers a little window into what life is like as a working model. Some of the results aren't that surprising (most models begin working at age 13-19, most of them have been told to lose weight by their agencies), but others are downright horrifying.
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Hayley Phelan
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The modeling industry is largely unregulated: Models are independent contractors without basic employment rights like workplace protection and minimum age and wage requirements. That's why the Model Alliance, established to improve models' working conditions as well as provide a safe space for models to communicate with one another about their rights, created one of the first surveys we've seen to offer an analysis of models' experiences. "When Sara [Ziff, the founder of the Model Alliance] and I were just starting to think about ways we could organize models, and how we might go about working for fairer labor standards in the industry, we realized we first needed to know how models viewed their working conditions, and where models themselves saw room for improvement," Jenna Sauers, who sits on the board of the Model Alliance, said. "We did the survey because we wanted a map, basically." Granted, the sample size is pretty small (the Alliance sent an anonymous online survey to 241 working models, and only 85 responded) but still, it offers a little window into what life is like as a working model. Some of the results aren't that surprising (most models begin working at age 13-19, most of them have been told to lose weight by their agencies), but others are downright horrifying.
Photo: Getty

Photo: Getty

The modeling industry is largely unregulated: Models are independent contractors without basic employment rights like workplace protection and minimum age and wage requirements.

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