Israel has become the first country to impose legislation around a minimum weight for professional models and written disclosures on digitally altered adverts. Oh, well that is good news, only 6 years after the death of model Luisel Ramos who died from anorexia during Uruguay fashion week 2006.
Why has it taken so long for anyone in the fashion industry to catch on, the advocation of the unattainable size zero frame presented as idyllic worldwide is beyond ridiculous. Although I rant about how this pathetic societies distorted view of fashion model’s is I must appreciate the fact that the Israeli government are pioneering a law to hereby reduce the spread of eating disorders by banning underweight models from local advertising and disclosing in adverts that images have been photoshopped.
The new law, passed late on Monday, requires models to produce a medical report, dating back no more than three months, at every shoot that will be used on the Israeli market, stating that they are not malnourished by World Health Organization standards.
The U.N. agency uses a standard known as the body mass index – calculated by dividing weight by height – to determine malnutrition. WHO says a body-mass index below 18.5 is indicative of malnutrition, said Adato, a gynaecologist.
Additionally, any advertisement published for the Israeli market must also have a clearly written notice disclosing if the model used in it was digitally altered to make her, or him, look thinner. The law will not apply to foreign publications sold in Israel.
This appears to be the first attempt by any government to use legislation to take on a fashion industry accused of abetting eating disorders by idealising extreme thinness. It could become a model for other countries grappling with the spread of anorexia and bulimia, particularly among young women.
I speculate whether this law is attainable by the government. Fashion houses have, for years, declared ‘some models are natural thin’ refusing to use a more evenly proportioned frame when designing sample clothing for catwalk shows. Although I feel this change will make a dramatic change towards anorexia nervosa and bulimia cases recorded in the country, I fail to believe it will make a noticeable difference, if any at all, in the products produced by designers therefore questioning why the ban couldn’t have been made years previous.
Here’s to ringing in a happy and healthier future for fashion.