Munroe Bergdorf says getting sacked by L ‘Oréal “opened a narrative”
Model Munroe Bergdorf has discussed getting sacked by L ‘Oréal, saying the incident has “opened a narrative” – and that the LGBT community supported her throughout the controversy.
Bergdorf was fired by the cosmetics giant last year, after she posted on Facebook: “Honestly I don’t have energy to talk about the racial violence of white people any more. Yes ALL white people.”
She had been set to be the first openly trans woman to front a L’Oréal UK campaign.
Now, Bergdorf has spoken out about being given the sack at the Sheffield Doc/Fest this week.
“Mainly the black and queer communities really got behind me, and after that women got behind me and after that everybody else started talking about it,” she said, according to Hollywood Reporter.
“I think it opened a narrative. For a lot of people it was new information, it was things like unconscious bias that employers hold that means black people can’t get the jobs they’re qualified for.”
The model added that, for the L’Oréal campaign, the stylists could not find a make-up to match her skin tone, meaning the company resorted to using another brand.
“That was awkward,” she said.
Munroe recently posted a message on Twitter, calling for women-only spaces for trans women – and highlighting the low life expectancy for trans women of colour.
The outspoken 30-year-old model and activist uploaded an image of an activist holding a placard, with the statement: “The average life expectancy for trans women of color is 35 years.”
Bergdorf wrote above the image: “I’m often asked why I’m so vocal about issues that affect black trans women and people of colour in a wider sense. This is is why… Statistically I only have four years left to live.
She added: “This is why trans women need access to women only spaces.”
In a later tweet in the same thread, Bergdorf added: “This is why TERF culture and toxic masculinity needs stamping out. This is why we can not afford for society and the media to be indifferent when it comes to transphobia.”
A 2014 report by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights found that the average life expectancy of trans women in the USA is between 30 and 35
Bergdorf also tweeted about an incident in which she had to stop a shoot in New York due to transphobic abuse.
She wrote: “Had to abandon a shoot today in Times Square after a group of guys started catcalling me, then one clocked I was trans which sparked them all beginning to shout ‘yo that’s a nigga,’ ‘that’s a dude.'”
Bergdorf added: “I am sick of living in a world in which cis men continually objectify, other or abuse trans women depending on whether they want to fuck us, ostracize us or impose violence on us. Or all of the above.
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“Allow us to exist. Allow us to do our jobs. Or leave us alone.”
In March, Bergdorf resigned from her post as the LGBT advisor to the Labour Party after a week in the position.
The model faced calls to step down from the position from Conservative MPs, including out gay Tory MP Nigel Evans, after a string of historic tweets were uncovered in which she used the words “poof” and “dyke,” and made fun of a “hairy lesbian” friend’s “barren womb.”
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