Actions you can take
Build a safe culture and atmosphere where production workers are reassured that these issues are taken seriously, by the approach you take when you communicate about them and the tone you take in general. Encourage colleagues to feel they also have the power and shared responsibility to create a supportive environment.
If your production company does not already have one, you can use this Dignity at Work policy template written by Bectu and BFI as a basis. Add your agreed production values to it, if you have them, as well as any information about the process for reporting.
People should be clear about who they should talk to and what to expect if they raise an issue. Those who may receive reports should be clear on their role in the process too. Name a safeguarding lead or other responsible person. Every member of your crew should understand the options for raising something informally, making a formal report (internally or to the broadcaster/studio), raising a grievance if they are an employee, and anonymous reporting (which is a type of whistleblowing).
Include details of these in the wellbeing pack you send to new starters with, or as part of, their contract. They should also be flagged to line managers and mentioned in senior leader briefings and production meetings at the beginning of a production. Remind people who they can talk to about issues or to report them, at team meetings and in wellbeing memos, not just at the start of production.
It’s a simple way to build a picture about how the team is being treated on this production, on a daily basis. The cost of purchasing Call It! can be included in the budget at commissioning stage.
Encourage people to call The Film and TV Charity’s free Bullying Advice Service, where a specialist advisor can talk them through their experiences and help navigate options. Bodies like Bectu and Directors UK can also provide support and advocacy to their members. ScreenSkills provide accessible e-learning on the issues.
It’s important (for witnesses too) to make a record of details you may need to rely on later, as soon as possible. Doing so gives an element of control and can help your mental health in all sorts of ways.