Bullying Advice Service

Our Bullying Advice Service can help you to document and make sense of your experiences. Please fill in our form to book an appointment and receive direct support from our Bullying Adviser.

“The Bullying Adviser has been so supportive and helpful, giving up an enormous amount of time to help process my complaint and deal with the company in a more productive manner. I wish I had spoken to her far sooner.”

Book your appointment


What to do if you witness or experience bullying at work?

Bullying, Harassment and Discrimination (BHD) are significant issues in the Film and TV industry, and are a matter of great concern in today’s workplaces. According to our 2019 Looking Glass survey, more than four in five people working in TV and film have either experienced or witnessed BHD in the workplace. Sadly, it is one of our industry’s main causes of poor mental health.

Five illustrated people, four of them our coral colour to represent the 4 out of 5 people that have experienced

Our Bullying Advice Service offers one-to-one support from our specialist Bullying Adviser. They have worked in and understand the film and TV industry.

Remember: If you have experienced or witnessed any form of physical or sexual threat, harassment, abuse or criminal activity, you must contact the police.

Discover a range of information and resources tailored for individuals working in production:

Black and white photo of two men sat at a coffee table talking.

What should you do if you think you’re being bullied, or if you want to help someone with a bullying issue?

This service is not yet available. Please check back later.

The British Sign Language team are available 09:00 to 17:00, Monday to Friday.
Click here to book an appointment.

Welcome to the Film and Television Charity. Calls are recorded for the purposes of quality and staff training. This is a confidential service, however, there are some exceptions to this and these are where there may be a risk to your own health and safety, that of others or if you have been involved in a crime. An advisor will be with you shortly, Thank You.

All of our advisors are busy at the moment. Would you like to book an appointment?

An error occurred, please refresh your browser to try again.

The first thing anyone who is concerned about bullying at work should do is to start creating a written log with details of the behaviour they are experiencing or witnessing, including dates, times, a description of what occurred and a note of any witnesses. Documenting your experiences can be an enormously helpful way of helping you understand what you’re going through and identify patterns, as well as the seriousness of the behaviour.

It is also helpful to gather any other evidence of the behaviour by keeping copies of any relevant documentation (e.g. emails, phone messages, notes of calls etc).

Having a record can help you with processing and recall. It will also help you to present your case if you decide you want to take things further, for example, by sharing your concerns at work, or reporting the behaviour.

  • Make sure all records are timed and dated and saved in a secure place – you could make a note on your phone or save details into a secure, protected document.
  • You may want to use different labels to separately record different kinds of behaviour, e.g. instances of undermining your competency, excluding you from other team members, being criticised in front of colleagues etc. For a list of definitions of what might constitute bullying and/or harassment you can look at If you’re treated unfairly at work – Acas
  • Save or screenshot any relevant emails, WhatsApp messages etc.
  • Record whether there were any witnesses and who they were.
  • Record whether other people are experiencing similar problems.
  • Record the impact the situation is having on you and if you have taken any steps to address it (e.g. GP appointments etc).
What to include in your record
  • When did the incident happen? (During production, filming, editing etc.)
  • Where did the incident happen? (On location, in an office, at a viewing, etc.)

Give specifics about the people involved

  • Name
  • Work title
  • Another other relevant information

How were they involved?

  • They caused the incident
  • They took part in the incident
  • They observed the incident
  • They overheard the incident
  • Someone told them about the incident
Try to add any additional comments about their involvement if you can

Details about the incident

  • Please describe everything you can remember about what happened
  • How did this incident make you feel as it was happening?
  • How did this incident make you feel after it happened?
  • How would you categorise the incident?
    • Age, Disability, Gender reassignment, Marriage and Civil Partnership, Pregnancy and Maternity, Race, Religion or beliefs, Sex.

Try to add any additional comments about their involvement if you can.

Remember that you can speak to our Bullying Adviser at any stage in this process for advice on definitions, how to make a record, what your options are and what you might want to do next – or simply about how you are feeling.

Download our excel template to help you to create a record.

Download template

Everyone’s situation is different and that’s why we have a dedicated Bullying Adviser who can help you think through your individual circumstances.

Even if you’re not ready to speak to someone, you can still make sure you’re looking after your mental health. Our guide to Mental Health and Wellbeing Resources has information and details of organisations who can provide additional support if you’ve experienced or witnessed bullying, or if you are trying to prevent it in the industry.

Please remember: If you have experienced or witnessed any form of physical or sexual threat, harassment, abuse or criminal activity, you must contact the police.

First and foremost, we encourage you to speak to our Bullying Adviser, who can help you to decide what course of action is best for you. For example:

  • Know your rights: It’s important to know your legal and contractual rights. It doesn’t matter whether you are employed, self-employed or freelance, you still always have the right to a safe and harassment-free workplace, and your employer has a legal duty of care towards you. See The Citizens Advice Guidance.
  • Check workplace policies and procedures: It’s useful to check whether your workplace has any internal policies or procedures for dealing with bullying and harassment. Ideally your workplace will have a Bullying and Harassment Policy, or your contract or staff handbook may contain guidance. This should outline the company’s stance on bullying, how to report it and name the person you should approach. If it doesn’t, you can refer to the BFI / BAFTA Guidelines for employers and employees, which includes useful definitions and examples, a template Dignity at Work policy and recommendations for good practice across the industry. You may also refer to guidance from ACAS on being treated unfairly at work and dealing with problems at work.
  • Training: Take the ScreenSkills or BIFA modules to familiarise yourself with processes around bullying.
  • Seek legal guidance: Consider talking to a lawyer at an early stage to enable you to understand your options and legal rights and provide you with guidance and support to deal with the bullying. Depending on the circumstances of the bullying or harassment it could be unlawful. Legal action may not always be possible, but a lawyer can offer specific advice. Our legal service is free and can be accessed through the Film and TV Support Line. You will be able to access advice on the nature of your contract, your rights and your employer’s legal responsibilities.
  • Seek professional help: If bullying is affecting your mental or physical health, it is important to seek medical advice. You can also talk to a professional such as a counsellor or therapist. They can provide professional support and help you explore ways to cope with the effects of bullying while you take other action. Find out if you’re eligible for six sessions of free counselling via our 24/7 support line. There are further mental health agencies and sources of support listed in our Mental Health and Wellbeing Resources.

Think about who is best placed to support you. Do you have co-workers who can assist you? Peer support can be incredibly validating and there are lots of networks in the industry.

Our Freelancer Connector Grants pilot scheme funded the ten film and TV freelancer networks listed below. The pilot found that these projects have a significant positive effect on members’ mental wellbeing, connecting often lonely and isolated industry workers who lack relationships with people ‘like them’ in their working environments.

There are many more out there – largely targeted at underrepresented groups and those facing additional barriers, providing professional support, social connections and networking opportunities.

  • Wonder Women connects a diverse range of freelance women who work in Television (in production, corporate and editorial roles) to industry leaders for year-long mentoring, monthly master classes and informal peer support.
  • Film and TV Carers Club is run by Carers for Carers, to provide a more open dialogue about caring responsibilities, with a web presence, informal peer to peer support and monthly online meetings.
  • The Black Film and TV Forum is a peer support group for Black film and TV professionals in West Midlands. Meeting weekly to offer support, industry opportunities, network and collaborate. They also host special events with industry leaders and provide a weekly newsletter.
  • British Arab Writers Group is an informal collective that meet remotely to support each other through sharing job opportunities, troubleshooting work-based issues, collaborating creatively and building friendships.
  • Trans On Screen professionals in Film & TV is an online talent directory representing trans, non-binary and gender non-conforming professionals in all areas of Film and TV, from pre-production to distribution. They regularly organise meet-ups, events and workshops throughout the UK.
  • Skye Films Ltd New community initiative that aims to connect freelance workers living in remote regions in Scotland. They host occasional in-person meetings Skye, plus regular online meetups.
  • Peer Support Groups – Film in Mind is a new initiative designed to support Documentary filmmakers in setting up their own peer-support networks, plus provide facilitation training and ongoing supervision.
  • The Black Costume Network is a cohort creating an open & safer space for UK Black & Mixed race creatives in the Costume Industry focusing on positivity, support & action. They provide career advice, wellbeing support, online and in-person meet-ups.
  • BEAM Network [British East & South East Asians in media] is an online community of 1600+ members, dedicated to supporting British East and South East Asians (BESEAs) working behind the scenes in the film, television and media industry. BEAM Network runs regular informal meet ups and networking events.
  • We Are Doc Women was founded in 2017 to provide peer support for women directors working in factual film and television across the UK. They now number almost 2000 women from researchers to Executive Producers. They advocate for equal opportunities, greater support and fair recognition within the industry.

Book your appointment

The Bullying Advice Service is a free, completely confidential telephone service and our Bullying Adviser is trained to work with people who have experienced, or who are currently experiencing, bullying at work. Sometimes just talking about it can help you begin to understand and process your experience. It can also be a useful way for you to think about your options or any actions you may want to take.

If you would like to contact the service, you can make an appointment by completing the below:

You can also call our 24-hour support line on 0800 054 0000 or use our live chat for a listening ear and they can make an appointment on your behalf.

We're committed to your privacy. The Film and TV Charity will use the information you provide to us to contact you about the Bullying Advice Service. For more information, check out our Privacy Policy.

Additional support for you

24-Hour Support Line

Friendly, confidential advice, round-the-clock. From financial guidance to legal advice, we are here for everyone working behind the scenes in film, TV, and cinema.

Access our support line

Mental Wellbeing

Our trained team has lots of experience and can give you quick, discreet advice. We can hep with grief counselling, bullying and harrassment advice and support.

Mental Wellbeing support

Freelancer's Hub

Freelancers face their own unique set of challenges. That’s why we’ve created the Freelancer Wellbeing Hub. It’s especially for people freelancing in film , TV, and cinema — so you should feel right at home

Discover more tools and resources