After accusations of racism, sexism, transphobia, and homophobia shut down London’s Radar Radio last April, a new “female-led” station has emerged to take its place.
Peckham-based Foundation.FM launched last week, and the station promises “zero-tolerance” for all the boys-will-be-boys isms typical of male-dominated radio, according to Resident Advisor News:
“For us, radio is still a very male-dominated place,” said [Ami Bennett, a founder of Foundation]. “This is an opportunity for us to put women at the forefront at every turn. That’s not to say that this is female-only, it’s absolutely not about that. But this [station] will definitely be female-led.” She added: “Usually there’s only one seat at the table for a female DJ, whereas at Foundation.FM every seat at the table is open to anyone, whatever their gender or sexual orientation.”
Last April, Pxssy Palace, an all-woman club crew who hosted a show on Radar Radio, left the station, citing racism, discrimination, and exploitation as their reasons for leaving. In the backlash that followed, former Radar producer Ashtart Al-Hurra came forward to describe months of harassment that management brushed off as boys being boys. In the subsequent backlash, the entire station went under.
Now, Becky Richardson, Ami Bennett and Frankie Wells, who have collective experience with both Radar and BBC Radio, have stepped in to fill the void with their hopefully more inclusive space.
Foundation.FM will broadcast 10am to 10pm Monday-Friday, with a brunch-themed morning show and daily “happy hour” programming. According to Resident Advisor, “DJs and hosts already on board include Ellie Prohan, K2RAH, Sistren, Kamilla, Tayylor Made, Becky Tong and more.”
Now if only America would offer up an inclusive alternative to the skeevy sludge of morning DJs we could all give our seek buttons a break in rush hour traffic.