The Umbrella Academy star Elliot Page and Schitt's Creek actor Dan Levy are among those who have shared their support for the Netflix staff who have staged a walkout in response to the streaming service's recent Dave Chappelle controversy.
The comedian sparked outrage earlier this month when his latest special The Closer landed online, which included material pertaining to the transgender community which some have found offensive and has drawn intense criticism from the LGBTQ+ community.
In light of the backlash, activists called for the rally and urged the platform to invest in trans and nonbinary talent within the entertainment industry, something that Page championed on his Instagram yesterday (Wednesday, October 20).
"I stand with the trans, nonbinary, and BIPOC employees at Netflix fighting for more and better trans stories and a more inclusive workplace," he penned alongside a video of activist Ashlee Marie Preston, who spearheaded the demonstration outside Netflix headquarters in Los Angeles.
"I've seen first-hand how vital television can be when it comes to influencing the cultural conversation. That impact is real and works both ways: positively AND negatively," Levy, who signed a content deal with the service last month, wrote in his own post. "Transphobia is unacceptable and harmful. That isn't a debate."
Elsewhere, Feel Good star Mae Martin added: "I don't think it's very difficult to be funny without ridiculing marginalised groups and contributing to a culture of transphobia that directly results in disproportionate levels of violence, suicide, and discrimination," they argued.
"As a trans/non-binary person who works with Netflix, this has been a true bummer, but I'm hopeful for positive and thoughtful reflection moving forward."
While Netflix initially defended Chappelle's comments, CEO Ted Sarandos seemingly backtracked a few hours before the walkout, saying: "I screwed up that internal communication.
"I did that, and I screwed it up in two ways. First and foremost, I should have led with a lot more humanity. Meaning, I had a group of employees who were definitely feeling pain and hurt from a decision we made," he admitted in a Q&A with Variety. "And I think that needs to be acknowledged up front before you get into the nuts and bolts of anything. I didn't do that."
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