Union Equity is embroiled in a censorship row after members of its minority ethnic members committee claimed the union had deleted its recent tweets about actor Laurence Fox from its Twitter feed.
Committee members claimed the union had locked the social media account, following a series of tweets the committee sent out on its own account at the end of last week.
In the tweets, the committee was responding to comments made by Fox on the BBC’s Question Time, after he was accused of being a “white privileged male” by an audience member. Fox responded by claiming he was the victim of racism.
The committee used Twitter to call on other actors to “unequivocally denounce” Fox and labelled him a “disgrace to our industry”.
Shortly afterwards, the tweets were deleted, with committee member Jassa Ahluwalia claiming Equity had deleted them.
This statement re Laurence Fox, quoted in @TheStage, has been deleted by @EquityUK and the committee has been locked out of our @EquityMEM account. We look forward to resolving this as soon as possible. https://t.co/CeRWPpd87t
— Jassa Ahluwalia (@OfficialJassa) January 18, 2020
Ahluwalia claimed the committee’s initial tweets had been sent out following consultation with the entire committee, despite Equity’s claim they had been written by two members and did not represent the committee’s views.
The committee’s chair, Daniel York Loh, also claimed Equity had deleted the tweets and accused the union of “chucking its minority ethnic members under the bus”. He accused the union of censorship, but said he would take responsibility for the committee’s actions and would stand down if Equity asked him to.
All true and I really do not appreciate my trade union chucking its minority ethnic members under the bus like this. HOWEVER I’m the committee Chair so I take full responsibility. If you want to come at anyone come at me and I’m perfectly willing to stand down if Equity wishes https://t.co/TA90FpJhpr
— Daniel York Loh 😷 (@danielfyork) January 18, 2020
Meanwhile, actor Lucy Sheen accused the union of “silencing” its non-white members.
As memeber of Equity & a BAME am furious they have blocked the @EquityMEM twitter acc, deleted all tweets relating 2 #LaurenceFox ineffect silencing their non-white memebers. It appears it’ sn only fellow white actors that can spk out against racist & prejudicial behaviour https://t.co/qkJ1nmyPqC
— LucySheen周麗端😷🖐🏽🌹 (@LucySheen) January 19, 2020
Equity declined to comment.