New pact to prevent eating disorders in models

International fashion magazine Vogue, and Elite Model Management have signed up to a pact aimed to regulate the modelling industry and enforce stricter rules concerning underage and under-weight models. The companies have advised that the whole industry is needed to get behind the pact in order for this to make a difference.

As a result of the pact, any modelling agents or editors associated with Vogue must agree to “not knowingly work with models under the age of 16 or who appear to have an eating disorder.” Alexandra Shulman, Editor of UK Vogue, said that the magazine did not want to use pictures of girls with eating disorders and will tell photographers when she thinks a girl is too thin to be used in the magazine. This comes after models have spoken out about being asked to lose weight and have regular ‘weigh-ins’ despite being only a size six.

Elite Model Management say that they prefer to take girls on board who are between a size 8–10 as these are the ‘industry standard’. Whilst they are keen to ensure all of their models are healthy they tell anyone above a size ten that they will need to ‘work on their body’ in order to achieve the correct body size. Although the agency says that they encourage girls to lose weight ‘naturally’, it is easy to see in such a competitive industry how this could lead to eating disorders developing.

Dr Robert Lefever, Addiction Specialist, has written a letter to anyone who thinks they might be suffering from an eating disorder to encourage them to seek help, or to help themselves.

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