Naomi Campbell, Iman, Bethann Hardison Name Designers Who Lack Diversity

Among the offenders are Calvin Klein, Donna Karan and Armani.

Posted: 09/10/2013 11:45 AM EDT
Iman, Bethann Hardison, Naomi Campbell

It's no secret that fashion runways could use a lot more diversity and that models of color often see themselves shut out of gigs simply because of their skin color. As New York Fashion Week is underway, Naomi Campbell and Iman have teamed up with activist Bethann Hardison to end the vagueness when it comes to fashion's diversity issue. In a recent interview with Good Morning America, the three named which top designers failed the grade on the matter.

Included in the list of designers who used "one or no models of color" were Calvin Klein, Donna Karan and Armani.

"I don't like it.... Where's the others?" Campbell said. "I'm very outspoken, as we know. The statistics, it's really shocking. Heartbreaking. Your body and beauty, it doesn't matter what color you are. If you’ve got the right talent, you should be there having the opportunity to do the job."

Iman even noted that there are even less Black models working today than when she strutted the runway in the 1970s.

"There were more Black models working then than it is happening in 2013. There is a time when silence is not acceptable at all. And if the conversation cannot be had publicly in our industry, then inherently there is something wrong with the industry," she said.

But there are positives to be found in their message as the three also named Diane von Furstenberg and Tom Ford as designers who are diversifying their pool and seeing beauty regardless of skin color. While the color barrier has been called a racist act, Hardison added that it was one based in ignorance.

"I think they're ignorant and they're arrogant, and I think it's not even about racism," she explained. "I think it's a sense of laziness and they've told themselves a story."


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(Photo: Courtesy ABC News)

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