#DearNYFW – An Open Letter to the American Fashion Industry

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Tuesday, January 31st, 2017

Dear Members of the American Fashion Industry,

As models, we care about each other’s health and wellbeing. As we look toward New York Fashion Week, we strongly urge you to prioritize health and celebrate diversity on the runway this season.

Concerns about the fashion industry’s promotion of extreme thinness are nothing new but a recent research study published in the International Journal of Eating Disorders confirms that unhealthy weight control practices are a serious problem in the industry. Too often, models are being pressured to jeopardize their health and safety as a prerequisite for employment.

Eating disorders have the highest mortality rate of any mental health concern and survivors often suffer irreversible damage to their health. That is why we have teamed up with the Model Alliance and the National Eating Disorders Association to address this issue. 

Together, we are challenging you to make a serious commitment to promote health and diversity on the runway. Through our social media platforms, which collectively reach millions of people, we will recognize the industry leaders who step up to this challenge. Specifically, we will keep an eye out for diversity of race, size, age, and gender status, and we hope to see diversity within and across all of those categories. 

No one likes the hassle or expense of increased regulations and paperwork. However, data shows that the American fashion industry has yet to prove that it is capable of following healthy practices on its own.

Now more than ever, we have an opportunity to send the message that diversity is what makes us strong. We sincerely hope that all of you – from designers and editors to agents and casting directors – will collectively harness the industry’s creative power to be forward thinking, inclusive, and do the right thing.  

In solidarity,

Yomi Abiola
Kiara Ailene
Hartje Andresen
Olesia Anisimovich
Caitriona Balfe 
Te’sa Ballanco 
Afiya Bennett
Abba Binns
Grace Booth
Lauren Bowers
Johanna Broughton
Ida Burchardi
Zuzanna Buchwald
Audra Callo
Madison Caudill
Yaris Cedano
Ashley Chew
Kartia Crane 
Lily Cummings
Victoire Dauxerre
Lisa Davies
Amber Distance
Louise Donegan
Aglae Dreyer
Nikki Dubose
Karen Elson
Dani Evans
Ana Fostia 
Kenza Fourati
Miranda Frum
Marianne Garces
Alessandra Garcia-Lorido
Briy Gilgeous
Lily Goodman
Javeonna Gordon
Liz Harlan
Shalom Harlow
Meredith Hattam
Madeline Hill
Sabina Karlsson
Britt Kline
Hannelore Knuts
Jenn Kosinski
Robyn Lawley
Iskra Lawrence
Amy Lemons
Jessica Lewis
Kaye Li Taylor
Jasmine Lobe
Brittany Mason
Briauna Mauria 
Megassus McCabe 
Cameron McCartney
Taylor McKay
Lizzie Miller
Amber Mitchell
Kelly Mittendorf
Messalina Morley
Alexandra Morris
Chloe Nicole
Alison Nix
Louise O’Reilly
Michelle Olson 
Carré Otis
Louise Parker
Shivani Persad
Renee Peters
Nicole Petty
Marquita Pring
Missy Rayder
Moe Reid 
Madisyn Ritland
Geena Rocero
Lily Rose
Jennie Runk
Meki Saldana 
Madison Schill
Katie Schmid
Tonya Sharma
Sabrina Sikora
Ingrid Sophie Schram
Alyona Shishmareva
Alise Shoemaker
Nimue Smit
Patricia St. Pierre
Gemma Steele
Seana Steele
Catrina Stella
Roshelle Elena Sumner 
Jennie Thwaites 
Mathilda Tolvanen
Austria Ulloa
Bree Warren
Monica Watkins
Elettra Wiedemann
Sara Ziff
Industry Supporters
Adams Bellouis, Fashion Stylist
Lauren Chan, Fashion Features Editor, GLAMOUR
Glassbook Magazine
Alexi Lubomirski, Photographer
Becca McCharen, CEO of CHROMAT
Patrick McMullan, Photographer
JAG Modeling Agency
James Scully, Casting Director
Gilleon Smith, Casting Director
Models Union Denmark 
We Speak Agency