• BBC, ITV, Channel 4, Viacom and Sky to run event focussed on disability and the media
  • Event will take place on International Day of People with Disabilities
  • Sessions will look at boosting knowledge and confidence around disabilities and empowering positive change

disability awareness

Disability awareness: Top broadcasters become allies 

ITV, the BBC, Channel 4, Viacom and Sky have partnered to launch an event focussed on disability and the media to mark International Day of People with Disabilities (IDPWD).

Contributors from the UK’s major broadcasters will come together to share experiences, challenges, and best practice, as all five broadcasters continue to progress towards Doubling Disability by 2020, an initiative led by the Creative Diversity Network (CDN).

The sessions will take place on Tuesday 3 December, which is IDPWD, beginning with a session at BBC Salford in the morning. ITV London will host the afternoon sessions which will be open to employees at the broadcasters as well as a wider audience.

The sessions, which aim to improve knowledge and confidence around disability, on and off screen as well as empowering staff to implement positive changes, will last an hour per session. Another aim is to build awareness of common barriers to development opportunities within the organisations and how to overcome them, ITV said in a statement to the press.

The broadcasters will live stream the sessions from both venues.

Clare Sumner, BBC’s director of policy and BBC’s executive sponsor of culture and career progression for disabled colleagues said: “The BBC wants to celebrate International Day of People with Disabilities.

“I am delighted that we are co-hosting an event with ITV to drive our ambition to be more inclusive and ground-breaking in our approach. It’s a great opportunity to bring more talented disabled people in to our industry.”

The day follows a similar event held in honour of IDPWD 2018, called A Visible Me which was hosted by the BBC and ITV.

The 2018 event brought together on-screen talent with off-screen managers, co-workers and networks to discuss some of the challenges and under-representation that is still evident behind the camera. This year’s event will build on those conversations and the work being done as part of the commitment to double disability across the industry, ITV added.

Mark Smith, ITV Group chief technology officer and ITV able sponsor: “As the sponsor of our newly launched ITV Able network, I am delighted that ITV are once again partnering with the BBC, and this year also with the other main broadcasters, to host this event in celebration of International Day of People with Disabilities.

“This is a fantastic opportunity for collaboration across the broadcasters and demonstrates the on-going commitment and passion we all share to build an inclusive and representative industry where everyone can thrive.”