The Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) has warned its
members against the use of underage and unhealthy models at the upcoming
New York Fashion Week, taking place from February 12 to 19.

The open letter, signed with love from CFDA president designer Diane von
Furstenberg and CEO Steven Kolb, stressed the need to remember that “beauty
is health and health is beauty” and that each fashion label should take a
look at the organisation’s health initiative guidelines, which include
encouraging models who have an eating disorder to seek help, checking
model’s ID to ensure they are not underage and supplying healthy food and
drink backstage.

Von Furstenberg also warns against the use of young models, adding: “We
strongly believe that models under the age of 16 do not belong on the
runway and we ask everyone to follow this belief. Remember, we must
consider the emotional and physical well-being of these young women.”

To conclude the letter, the CFDA also states that it is working with
former model Bethann Hardison to promote diversity on the runway and has
created guidelines to support the cause, which includes requirements for
designers to request models of colour from agencies, to include them every
season, to encourage agencies to scout models of colour and to be open
minded about adding diversity to model line-ups.