The Film and TV Charity

Survey of Arab, Jewish and Muslim members of the UK film and TV workforce on their experiences relating to the conflict in Israel and Gaza on and after 7 October 2023

Photographer: Musa Alzanoun, (Source:

As part of their remit to support those working behind the scenes in film, TV, and cinema, the Film and TV Charity provide practical support with mental and physical health and financial wellbeing to those working in the industry. They focus too on promoting greater equity and inclusion to the industry, especially for people from marginalised or under-represented groups.

While there has been much research now on how first responders like police, firefighters and paramedics are psychologically affected by the trauma they witness in the course of their work, there has been comparatively little about how the mental health of journalists or broadcasters is impacted, and even less about how people who may be working at more of a distance cope.

In response to calls they were receiving  from members of Arab, Muslim and Jewish heritage working in TV and film reporting a deterioration in their mental health following Hamas’ October 7 attacks, Israel’s response and the subsequent humanitarian crisis in Gaza, the Film and TV Charity undertook a survey of their members.

Among their most striking findings:

  • 94% of respondents experienced a deterioration in their mental health since 7th October 2023
  • Only 23% felt supported by their employers
  • 51% believe the industry is structurally and/or systemically discriminatory towards their community
  • 57% believe that views and behaviours hostile to their community are common in the industry.

An introduction to the survey results and a link to the full report, published with the Film and TV Charity’s kind permission, is below.

It is a reminder not just of the ripples caused by conflict but also of how trauma knows no boundaries.

8 May 2024

Foreword to the report by Marcus Ryder, CEO, The Film and TV Charity

The Film and TV Charity exists to support the mental, financial and physical health of people working behind the scenes in the UK film, television, and cinema sectors. It does so through the lens of equity, inclusion, and diversity to ensure our services meet the needs of the full range of people working in the industry.

This report adheres to these principles by identifying a specific issue that directly relates to the mental, financial, or physical health of industry worker and ensuring that our work – and therefore the work of our funders – directly relates to the the specific characteristics and lived experiences of the people in question.

Almost immediately following the Hamas-led attacks on October 7th and the subsequent Israeli actions in Gaza, the Film and TV Charity started to receive anecdotal reports that the mental health of Arab, Jewish, and Muslim people in the industry was being adversely affected. These anecdotal reports only increased as the ongoing humanitarian crisis began to unfold. There were also high-profile examples of antisemitism at industry events that were having a wider impact on people across the industry and the work environment.

It was imperative for the Charity to build an evidence base to underpin what up until that moment had been reports of ‘one-off incidents’ and ‘industry chatter’.

To that end we conducted an industry-wide survey to add quantitative data to the growing body of testimony about what was happening to the mental health of Jewish, Arab and Muslim people working in the industry.

The Charity also facilitated a series of roundtable meetings in which a Muslim and Arab group and a Jewish group, used early findings from the survey to talk directly to senior industry leaders and bodies, sharing insights about the issues that they believe need to be addressed to ensure a better and more mentally healthy working environment in the industry.

The purpose of this report is of course not to “solve the conflict in Israel and Palestine”. Nor is it to comment off the differing political views on a complex geopolitical conflict which is still unfolding in real time. The report is primarily focused on the mental health of Arab, Jewish, and Muslim people working in the industry. It asks how, following the attacks of October 7th and the ongoing humanitarian crisis, the UK film and TV industry can work directly with these groups to tackle issues that not only came to the fore in the last few months but, in many cases, are also long-standing problems.

With appropriate support from the industry, my colleagues and I at the Film and TV Charity look forward to continuing this work and making the industry a place act ensures everyone feels at home.

To read The TV and Film Charity’s full report, click here