Christy Turlington has claimed "harassment and mistreatment" is rife in the fashion industry.

Christy Turlington

Christy Turlington

The 48-year-old supermodel - who embarked on a career at the helm of the business in the 1990s - believes the fashion industry is "surrounded by predators", and though she has been "fortunate" enough never to have "personally experienced anything traumatic" she knows she is in the minority of people who have suffered.

Speaking to WWD about the downfalls of the industry in the wake of sexual harassments allegations made against Harvey Weinstein, the catwalk icon said: "I can say that harassment and mistreatment have always been widely known and tolerated in the industry. The industry is surrounded by predators who thrive on the constant rejection and loneliness so many of us have experienced at some point in our careers. I feel fortunate that I did not personally experience anything traumatic, but also know that is not the norm."

Although Christy has insisted she was not a victim of any issues during her career, she has admitted there were times she was gobsmacked by the "creepy playboy type" of people she was put under the care of.

She continued: "There were many times I could not believe who I was left under the care of on early trips to Milan, Paris or London. I would get off of a flight and find some creepy playboy type there to meet me.

"In hindsight, I fear I may have played the 'honeypot' that has been described in the stories about these predators who make other women feel protected. Unknowingly, but still an accomplice of sorts. I might have been the assurance that made other young women feel safer. If I'd known how these men thought and behaved, I might have done more to stay clear of them."

Christy - who has 13-year-old daughter Grace and 11-year-old son Finn with her husband Edward Burns - thinks the "best way" for models to be safe in the industry is to stay in school and to avoid going on set until they are older.

She advised: "The best way to protect young models is to keep them in school and off sets until they are adults. But that's only part of the problem. We need to teach our girls, and young boys, how to protect themselves and defend themselves against predators in every area of their lives. Sexual harassment can happen anywhere and at any time. In the playground, in school, on the bus, in crowded public spaces. Accepting this and preparing for it will help more of us know how to handle it when it does happen."


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