I have some very exciting news to share: an organization that is very dear to my heart, and a project that I’ve had the honor of working on in one capacity or another on and off since the fall of 2009, is now on the cusp of its public début.
The Model Alliance is the brainchild of my friend and partner Sara Ziff — check out Shakthi Jothianandan’s excellent profile of Sara in the brand new issue of New York — and I am proud to serve on its board. The Model Alliance is a brand new nonprofit that works to address labor issues in the fashion industry, particularly labor issues affecting models. We want to promote the health and well-being of the very young people — many of them just children — who work as models.
Our Web site very quietly went live on Monday. You should all go click on it! Especially this page, where we’ve published beautiful, un-airbrushed portraits by Peter Ash Lee of many of our founding supporters, and this page, where you can read Sara’s introductory note, and this page, where you can see three excellent essays. One is by Lisa Cant, who writes about navigating the conflicts between having a career and getting an education, one is by Lisa Davies, who writes about financial transparency, and one is by Jessica Clark, who — under consideration for a major international cosmetics campaign — writes about the construction of race within the industry. You could also click here to get information on our three policy initiatives for the FW12 season, here to check out our news feed, where I’ll be writing about labor issues and news, and, oh, look, here you can even give us money. (Money is great, it really helps us do things.) Over the coming weeks, we have so many great things in store. If you want to make sure you’ll be the first to know, follow us on Twitter or “Like” us on Facebook.
This has been a long time coming. I love working in fashion, but given my background and experiences, I know first-hand there are problems in this industry. I, for one, am proud to be helping to find solutions.