According to a video posted by model Joia Talbott, she was turned down by an unnamed casting company because "they told us they didn't want any more black models." She and some 15 other black models were reportedly told that "casting is closed," according to a Racked report.
"They told us they didn't want any more black models and that afros were a no-no," the model said in a video posted on Facebook July 13. "They were definitely not feeling my afro at all, so I didn't stand a chance, right? Wow. We're ready to go back to LA where we're appreciated and we book."
"Somebody tell Miami that there's no such thing as too much brown skin," added another model, Kacey Leggett, who goes by the alias Ka-Cey.
While neither model named the casting company that denied them, Talbott says the allegedly "closed" casting continued after women of color got out of the line.
Talbott posted several pictures of women who were turned down on her Instagram account.
I was told today that I basically was no match for Miami Swim Week. That I didn’t “fit” the criteria and my pictures were no good. Let me move my bang to the side so I can look you in your eye when I prove you wrong 🖕🏾Doubt fuels my fire!! 💪🏾🔥 ••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••• #naturalhairdaily #luvyourmane #teamnatural #blackgirlsrock #brownskinbeauty #queen #blackqueen #4cnaturalhair #4bhair #melaninpoppin #MelaninSummer #flawless #darkskin #Darkskinwomen #blackgirlsrock #womanism #blackwomen #essence #instafashion #melanin #darkskinblackgirls #blackqueen #thedarkerthebetter #blackwomenbelike #curls #Afro #brownskingirls @blackwomenarepoppin @blackslayingit @darkskin.blackgirls #swimsuit #sunkissed #kinkycurly #swimsuit #swimwear
Fashion models have repeatedly complained about racial discrimination in the industry, Racked noted. Last year, a protest named "Black Models Matter" took place outside the Balenciaga company show during Paris Fashion Week. The company was reportedly targeted for using predominantly white models.
"I have heard from several agents, some of whom are black, that they have received mandate from Lanvin that they do not want to be presented with women of color," casting director James Scully wrote in an Instagram post at the time, according to Racked.
However, in the case of Miami Swim Week, the decision to turn down black ladies was apparently made by individual casting companies, as the 2017 show gallery by USA Today clearly shows models of various races and body shapes.