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France's Fashion Giants Pledge to End Abuse of Models

08 September 2017

The duo, whose brands include Gucci, Dior and Louis Vuitton, have also dropped under-16s for adult shoots or shows.

Fashion conglomerate's LVMH and Kering have teamed up to ban size zero models.

The two groups, whose brands include Alexander McQueen, Stella McCartney, Gucci, Saint Laurent, Christopher Kane, Louis Vuitton and Dior, have committed to banning the casting of French size 32 for women - the equivalent of a U.S. size zero or United Kingdom size four.

The groups are also trying to defend themselves against charges of causing eating disorders both among models and among women at large by promoting "size zero" images.

"To further ensure the care of models, it will be incumbent upon the brands to put a dedicated psychologist/therapist at their disposal during their working time".

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In May, a French law hit the statute books requiring models to present a doctor's certificate proving they are healthy to work according to their BMI, age, gender and body shape.

The fashion industry has been blighted for years by its sometimes shocking treatment of models. The well-being of models is of great importance to us, ' said Antoine Arnault, board member of LVMH and son of owner Bernard Arnault.

Also in March, France's advertising watchdog asked Kering's Yves Saint Laurent to modify two ads after receiving complaints that they were degrading to women.

What's more, last Paris Fashion Week in February, the working conditions of models came under intense scrutiny.

"We hope to be a source of inspiration for the whole sector, to provoke real change in the working conditions of models in the fashion industry".

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Commenting on this very welcome new development, François-Henri Pinault, Chairman and CEO of Kering said: "Respecting the dignity of all women has always been both a personal commitment for me and a priority for Kering as a Group". A monitoring committee, made up of representatives of the brands, agencies and models, will meet each year (once every six months for the first year).

The fashion houses behind brands including Christian Dior and Gucci will stop hiring underweight models for their catwalk shows.

"As the leaders in the luxury industry, we estimate that it's our duty to be in line with this initiative", he said.

A model walks the runway during the Louis Vuitton Menswear Spring/Summer 2018 show as part of Paris Fashion Week on 22 June 2017 in Paris, France.

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France's Fashion Giants Pledge to End Abuse of Models