Aisha Dee is taking a page out of her character’s book and speaking out about the problems within her own show, both on and off camera.
The 26-year-old Australian actress, who plays Kat Edison on Freeform’s “The Bold Type,” issued a lengthy statement late Wednesday that lamented the lack of diversity on the series about three millennial women working at a Manhattan magazine.
“I’m ready to take a cue from my girl Kat. What would Kat do?” Dee wrote, describing her bi-racial character as “unapologetic, outspoken (and) brave."
“She would take a stand and advocate for herself and all other marginalized voices to influence change. I am ready to push harder and speak louder for what matters to me: The diversity we see in front of the camera needs to be reflected in the diversity of the creative team behind the camera.”
Dee said it took two seasons to get a BIPOC (black, indigenous or person of color) writer on staff and there was just one black director in four seasons.
“We got to tell a story about a queer black woman and a lesbian Muslim woman falling in love, but there have never been any queer black or Muslim writers in the room,” she wrote.
A source told the Daily News that “The Bold Type” had a lesbian woman of color on staff in the second season and a bisexual woman of color in the third season. The fourth and current season has a writers room staffed by three writers who identify as LGBTQ+ and five who are people of color. Eight out of the 10 writers are women.
Dee also called out Kat’s current storyline, which sees her in a fledgling flirtation with Republican Ava (Alex Payton-Beesley), a woman whose father ran a gay conversion camp.
“The decision to have Kat enter into a relationship with a privileged conservative woman felt confusing and out of character,” Dee wrote.
“Despite my personal feelings about the choice, I tried my best to tell the story with honesty, even though the Kat I know and love would never make these choices. It was heartbreaking to watch Kat’s story turn into a redemption story for someone else, someone who is complicit in the oppression of so many. Someone (whose) politics are actively harmful to her communities.”
Such creative choices, Dee said, are not exclusive to “The Bold Type” but are prevalent through Hollywood.
“For a show that frequently uses words like intersectionality, inclusion, discourse and the various isms, I wonder how its stories may have been elevated had they been told through the lens of people with a more varied lived experience,” she wrote.
Dee said she has had frequent conversations with “The Bold Type” executives about “hiring, promoting and listening to diverse voices across the entire production.
“This is an opportunity to walk the walk, to really practice what ‘The Bold Type’ teaches, by acknowledging mistakes and making commitments to be better in the future,” she wrote.
In a joint statement to The News, the producers of “The Bold Type,” Universal Television and Freeform said they “applaud” Dee “for raising her hand and starting conversations around these important issues.”
“We look forward to continuing that dialogue and enacting positive change,” the statement read. “Our goal on ‘The Bold Type’ is and has always been to tell entertaining, authentic stories that are representative of the world that Kat, Jane and Sutton live in — we can only do that if we listen.”
“The Bold Type,” starring Dee, Katie Stevens and Meghann Fahy, has been lauded for its progressive storytelling, which has included storylines about sexuality, breast cancer and sexual assault.