Employment Consultation – Ruderman TV Challenge

Lights! Camera! Access! 2.0 is honored to collaborate with the Ruderman Family Foundation and Daryl “Chill” Mitchell on the creation of the “Ruderman TV Challenge” to increase performers with disabilities in this pilot season.

The Ruderman Family Foundation continues its work in Hollywood with a new initiative to transform the landscape of television by challenging networks, cable and content creators to case more actors with disabilities in this pilot season. The Ruderman Family Foundation is launching a new project to impact the visibility of actors with disabilities: the Ruderman TV Challenge.

At a time when the discussion around diversity in Hollywood is garnering great attention, disability is still being left out of the conversation. Approximately 20% of Americans have a disability, which makes them the largest minority in the U.S. However, depictions of disability in TV, film and advertising are consistently much lower—a staggering discrepancy of representation.

But disability is a fundamental part of the human experience and needs to be included in depictions of diversity. This project by the Foundation builds on the critically-acclaimed Ruderman White Paper on the Employment of Actors with Disabilities, a 2016 study which found that only 5% of all television characters with disabilities on screen were portrayed by performers with disabilities. It also comes as the next step after the Foundation hosted the Ruderman Studio-Wide Roundtable on Disability Inclusion in Los Angeles attended by around 200 industry insiders this past November.

The Ruderman TV Challenge was developed by the Foundation in collaboration with Tari Hartman Squire, creator of the Lights! Camera! Access! 2.0 Collaborative, a veteran of the disability inclusion movement in Hollywood and with Daryl “Chill” Mitchell, a long-time diversity and inclusion advocate, producer, and actor well-known for his role in the CBS hit show NCIS: New Orleans. The challenge is designed to reach television and cable executives and content creators with a very simple request: audition and cast more actors with disabilities this pilot season. The Foundation will track the pilots that are picked up for production and study which content creators and networks excelled at the challenge.

“We are hoping to see an increase of people with disabilities in any roles, including in the background and as secondary characters. Maybe a bank teller who is an amputee, or a college teacher who is a wheelchair user,” said Jay Ruderman, president of the Ruderman Family Foundation. “Our goal is to increase the overall visibility of people with disabilities in everyday situations on TV. We firmly believe that simply having greater visibility of people with disabilities not only reflects reality in America today, but can positively impact society’s attitudes toward people with disabilities.”

“We think that the stigma surrounding disability in the entertainment world may be at a turning point,” said Tari Hartman Squire. “An increasing number of scripted shows on the air, like Speechless authentically portray people with disabilities and are widely embraced by audiences. Networks are noticing that having authentic disability-inclusive diversity means successful business. Diversity is a business imperative, inclusion is a choice.”

The results of this extensive project will be released prior to the Emmys in September 2017. Stay tuned and thanks for participating in the Ruderman TV Challenge. For more information visit – http://www.rudermanfoundation.org/ruderman-tv-challenge

In a survey conducted by the University of Massachusetts/America’s Strength Foundation, “93% of those surveyed ranked hiring people with disabilities as third in importance when considering doing business with a company, right under environmentally conscious, and providing health insurance for employees. Of those surveyed, 87% preferred to give their business to those the hire people with disabilities.”

That company could be yours!

EIN SOF specializes in the full-spectrum of employment consultation services, with its portfolio of clients and strategic partners, and is uniquely qualified to galvanize your disability-inclusive diversity employment efforts and achieve your goals.

From small businesses seeking interns, to companies that want to recruit and hire employees; from global corporations that want to retain or promote employees and managers, to businesses that want to start or fortify disability Employee Resource Group (ERG) Business Council or Affinity Group, or build cross-ERG allies, EIN SOF’s customized sector approach to Employment Consultation can achieve your desired results.

For GSA Prime and Sub-contractors focused on compliance with the strengthened regulations for Section 503, EIN SOF and our strategic partners can help you develop a strategy to reach your work group goal of 7% employees with disabilities, achieving real, measurable, replicable and sustainable results.

From specialized initiatives like U.S. Department of Labor funded Add Us In California Consortium (five-year grant to increase employment of people with disabilities from historically-excluded communities); to building a solid recruiting pipeline with Career Opportunities for Students with Disabilities (COSD); to Career Advancement with UCLA Anderson School of Management’s Multidimensional Leaders Institute, or our Lights! Camera! Access! 2.0 Think Tanks and Call-to-Action Summits,  EIN SOF clients, partners and projects can fortify and diversify your disability-inclusive workforce business imperative.

For a complementary consultation of how to achieve more “D” in your “C-Suite,” click here.

Check out our success stories and winning strategies:

Young working woman who uses a wheelchair, holds folder and is on the phone.

Recruiting

For 12 years, EIN SOF is proud to be the only strategic marketing/development agency of record for Career Opportunities for Students with Disabilities (COSD), a national association focused on increasing the career employment rates for college students and recent graduates with disabilities. COSD is comprised of more than 1,500 member entities representing corporate and public sector employers, universities and community colleges (both career services and disability services), U.S. Government agencies and non-profit organizations.

Working in close collaboration with Alan Muir, COSD Founding Executive Director, EIN SOF has brought Fortune 500 companies to the COSD recruiting table including AT&T, American Airlines, Bank of America, CBS, Google, Hyatt, NBCUniversal, PepsiCo, Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines, United Airlines, Walt Disney Company, and Yahoo!

For What Can WE Do? the disability awareness and recruiting event of NBCU’s former Chief Diversity Officer, we tapped COSD to develop a database of 125 college students and recent graduates, including veterans, all with a 3.0 grade point average or higher, in the requested majors, of which 45 were selected as participants for resume review and speed interviewing, resulting in four on-boarded as interns.

A pre-event “Disability Etiquette Plus” webinar was presented by COSD to NBCU recruiters to increase the disability-related comfort level for the one-on-one sessions. Post-event, recruiters called the process “life changing.”

The National Governors Association highlights the COSD model–linking disability services and career services at universities–in its recent signature blueprint project, Building A Better Bottom Line: Employing People with Disabilities (pages 32 – 33). The Blueprint can be found at: nga.org/…/NGA_2013BetterBottomLineWeb.pdf.

Alan Muir, COSD Founding Executive Director was selected as one of the featured professionals highlighted in the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) What’s Your Connection? disability awareness campaign. Check it out here.

EIN SOF and COSD teamed to present the “Disability Etiquette Plus” webinar to over 300 AT&T recruiters, and customized the webinar and on-site trainings for other corporations.

For more information on EIN SOF and COSD on-site and webinar training for Diversity & Inclusion, HR, staffing, talent attraction, university relations, marketing, and other business units interfacing with disability, click here.

Career Advancement: UCLA Anderson School of Management's Leadership Institute for Managers with Disabilities, now the UCLA Multidimensional Leaders' Institute

Flyer of the Inaugural Offering of the UCLA Anderson Leadership Institute for Managers with Disabilities and the “Founding Organizations.”

Flyer of the Inaugural Offering of the UCLA Anderson Leadership Institute for Managers with Disabilities and the “Founding Organizations.”

When UCLA Anderson School of Management was challenged by Ted Childs, former VP of Global Workforce Diversity for IBM, to design a Leadership Institute for Managers with Disabilities within its critically-acclaimed portfolio of diversity Leadership Institutes, EIN SOF was tapped to design, conduct and analyze a Feasibility Study.

The result confirmed a critical mass of managers and high-potentials in the private sector marketplace and led to creation of the first-ever Leadership Institute for Managers with Disabilities. To frame the Institute and get buy-in from major corporations, EIN SOF designed the “Founding Organizations” concept whereby select companies with a proven track record were approached to jump-start corporate support and create a central accommodations fund.

Founding Organizations
AIG, AOL, AT&T, Avis, DiversityInc, Fannie Mae, Google, IBM, Merck, Microsoft, Motorola, PepsiCo, Society for Human Resource Management, Union Bank, US Business Leadership Network, U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy.

Institute Graduates
Alumni from the first two UCLA Institutes for Managers with Disabilities include: AT&T, Agilent Technologies, Bank of Montreal, CIA, Dow Chemical, ESPN, Fannie Mae, Google, IBM, Mattel, Merck, Microsoft, Minnesota Department of Human Services, Motorola, National Industries for the Blind, Northrop Grumman, Novartis, Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation, P&G, PepsiCo, U.S Departments of Labor and Treasury, U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum.

The UCLA Anderson Leadership Institute for Managers with Disabilities is now combined with other Leadership Institutes and has become the Multidimensional Leaders’ Institute.

This dynamic five-month Institute is designed for managers from diverse backgrounds and identities, including Disability, LGBT, African American, Asian Pacific, Native American and Latino, particularly in light of Section 503’s aspirational goal of 7% for workers with disabilities and VEVRAA benchmarks for hiring protected veterans, including those with disabilities.

Savvy companies must leverage value of its diverse workforce to build internal allies and attract new customers. To maintain a competitive edge and lead with distinction, multi-national corporations require executives to authentically lead by tapping into all facets of their background – more complex than one cultural script. Therefore, the Multidimensional leadership style is essential.

The UCLA Anderson MultiDimensional Leaders’ Institute is specifically designed for diverse leaders to fortify today’s global workforce and sharpen D&I focus through a collective lens, while honoring individual identity. It offers a uniquely powerful, real-world view of inclusive diversity leadership development. In addition, this Institute provides Section 503 documentation for federal contractors toward career advancement of managers with disabilities, which can be coupled with support of Career Opportunities for Students with Disabilities (COSD) on the recruiting end of the employment spectrum.

The next Institute is scheduled for May 23-26, 2016 on the UCLA campus. To learn if UCLA Anderson School of Management’s Multidimensional Leaders Institute is right for you, your colleagues, or your company, click here.

Section 503 & VEVRAA

As most employers know, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contracts Compliance Programs (OFCCP) has strengthened the Section 503/VEVRAA (Vietnam Veterans Readjustment Assistance Act) regulation that went into effect on March 24, 2014.

The aspirational goal of Section 503 is to increase each work group to 7% employees with disabilities. EIN SOF and its COSD partner can help design, establish and measure your affirmative action plans to fortify your disability-inclusive recruiting, hiring, retaining and career advancement strategies, using our portfolio of customized products and services. As a former GSA Contractor, EIN SOF is proud to report that 75% or our subcontractors and partners have disabilities, including a service-disabled veteran-owned business that covers our project management.  Together, EIN SOF and COSD can strengthen your talent pipeline with interns, part time or full-time employees, or service-disabled or disability-owned businesses. Did you know?

  • Before the economic downturn, a Microsoft/Forrester survey revealed the majority of working-age adults were likely to benefit from use of accessible technology: 60% of that workforce, or 101.4 million!
  • 38% (64.2 million) of working-age adults were likely to benefit from the use of accessible technology due to mild difficulties and impairments (impairments is the word used in the survey).
  • 22% (37.2 million) of working-age adults were very likely to benefit from the use of accessible technology due to severe difficulties and impairments.
  • 40% (67.6 million) of working-age adults were not likely to benefit due to no or minimal difficulties or impairments.

Did you know? According to COSD, 70% of college students have non-apparent or hidden disabilities. Chances are your workforce is already on the road to being diverse and may include people with disabilities that you may not be aware of because the majority do not self-identify.   EIN SOF can help you develop inventory strategies to document your recruiting, hiring, retaining and promotion efforts. The key issue for prospective and current employees with disabilities (including veterans), and you as an employer, is self-identification. EIN SOF and its partners COSD, UCLA Anderson School of Management’s Multidimensional Leaders Institute and some “soon to be announced partners” can help you develop a truly inclusive corporate culture, inventory and document your outreach efforts, develop LGBT and Disability Employee Resource Group (ERG) cross-divisional strategies to help employees with disabilities feel comfortable to “bring their whole self to work,” so that your company becomes an employer of choice. After all, diversity is a business imperative. Inclusion is a choice. For a complementary exploration of how EIN SOF and COSD can support your Section 503 efforts, click here.  

Disability-Inclusive Diversity: Add Us In California Consortium

EIN SOF is proud to be communications consultant for the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy’s Add Us In California Consortium, designed to increase employment of people with disabilities from historically-excluded communities.

Fifth year Add Us In California Consortium partners include World Institute on Disability (WID); National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC); California Department of Rehabilitation (DOR); Youth Organizing: YO! Disabled & Proud; and EIN SOF Communications, Inc.

The Add Us In California Consortium partners produced successful internship placements throughout the state.

The Add Us In California Consortium is the only one of eight Consortiums to be highlighted in the National Governor’s Association signature blueprint project, Building A Better Bottom Line: Employing People with Disabilities (page 18) nga.org/../NGA_2013BetterBottomLineWeb.pdf

More details on the Add Us In California Consortium can be found at
wid.org/…/Add Us In CA Consortium Overview.pdf

 

Preparation of this item was funded by the Office of Disability Employment Policy, U. S. Department of Labor, Grant Number: OD-22554-11-75-4-6. This document does not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the Office of Disability Employment Policy, U. S. Department of Labor, nor does the mention of trade names, commercial products, or organizations imply endorsement by the U. S. government.

A Better Bottom Line: Employing People with Disabilities Blueprint for Governors; 2012-2013 Chair’s Initiative; National Governors Association

U.S. Department of Labor Sector Summits

EIN SOF produced and helped launch Sector Summits for the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy, including:

Entertainment: Lights! Camera! Access!
Utilizing Tari Hartman Squire’s leadership with the Diversity Committee of the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, this “Call-to-Action” Summit, hosted by the Television Academy and keynoted by former  DOL Secretary Hilda Solis and former Assistant Secretary Kathleen Martinez, issued “soft challenges” to union, network, industry, diversity, veteran, academic and disability executives. This resulted in motivating NBCUniversal to create the What Can WE Do? disability awareness and recruiting event that onboarded four interns with disabilities, including a veteran.

Recently, former Assistant Secretary Martinez helped launch Actors AccessSM at SAG-AFTRA, whereby performers could opt-in and self disclose their disability on this database of actors, making it easier for casting directors to find them. To date, nearly 4,000 performers have self-identified as having a disability.
Photos can be found at: http://www.dol.gov/dol/media/photos/slideshows/20100710-lca.htm Remarks by Secretary Solis: http://www.dol.gov/_sec/media/speeches/20100710_LCA.htm

Healthcare: Careers Trends, Best Practices and Call-To-Action Summit
With the leadership of Karen McCulloch, founder of the National Organization of Nurses with Disabilities (NOND) as Subject Matter Expert, this Summit used framing results of the National Council on Disability/Manpower Report Workforce Infrastructure in Support of People with Disabilities: Matching Human Resources to Service Needs and was hosted by Access Living of Metropolitan Chicago.

In attendance were former DOL Secretary Hilda Solis, Assistant Secretary Kathy Martinez, OFCCP Director, Pat Shiu, then-White House Office of Public Engagement’s Kareem Dale, and healthcare, disability, diversity, veteran and academic executives.

Subsequently, ODEP signed an “Alliance Agreement” with NOND. Details can we found at: http://www.dol.gov/odep/alliances/nond.htm Click here for final report: http://www.dol.gov/odep/pdf/20110517.pdf

Financial Services: Profit by Investing in Workers with Disabilities
Teaming with host Financial Services Roundtable, this Summit brought together Assistant Secretary Kathy Martinez and others from DOL’s Veterans Employment & Training Administration (VETS) to join with financial services, diversity, disability, academic executives and thought leaders. The final report can be found here: http://www.dol.gov/odep/pdf/20110719.pdf

To create your own sector-specific summit and build a more diverse workforce, click here.

Presentations / Trainings

Tari Hartman Squire has presented at dozens of events and conferences on topics like disability strategic marketing, disability-inclusive diversity, readying the workforce, and media advocacy, among others.

For employment-related topics, EIN SOF partners with Career Opportunities for Students with Disabilities (COSD) for webinars, and on-site workshops. Together and separately, we have provided customized consulting and/or presentations to a number of employers, including AT&T, Barclay’s, Macy’s, Merck, NBCUniversal, Walmart, National Retail Federation, Conference Board and US Business Leadership Network.

We can assist employers with outreach to students with disabilities, provide expert insight to develop or enhance a disability-inclusive corporate culture, development of disability Employee Resource Groups and workforce strategies to recruit, hire, retain and promote employees with disabilities.

EIN SOF represents Robert David Hall, best known for his 13-year portrayal of Dr. Albert Robbins on CBS’ hit series, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation. Dave had the honor of introducing President Barack Obama at the White House for the 20th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Check it out here

http://www.sagaftra.org/i-am-pwds-robert-david-hall-introduces-president-white-house-ceremony

Tari’s past presentations and workshops include:

March 31, 2016: Forum on Workplace Inclusion –  Lights! Camera! Access! 2.0 - University of St. Thomas; Minneapolis

Moderated by:

Tari Hartman Squire

Panelists include:

Wells Fargo and BBDO

Past presentations and workshops include:

November 5, 2015: Career Opportunities for Students with Disabilities: Intersection of Corporate Culture and Disability CultureChicago

Moderated by:

Tari Hartman Squire

Panelists included:

Professor Carrie Sandahl, University of Illinois, Chicago

Professor David Perry, Dominican University

November 5, 2015: Career Opportunities for Students with Disabilities: Employer Best Practices Panel; Chicago

Moderated by:

Tari Hartman Squire

Panelists included:

Cat McLaughlin, PNC Bank

Anne LaBeaume , Walt Disney Company

Dee Torres, Exelon

August 4, 2015: Kennedy Center Intersections Conference; Arlington, VA

Lights! Camera! Access! 2.0

July 14, 2015: Lights! Camera! Access! 2.0 Think Tank hosted by City University of New York (CUNY) John Jay College of Criminal Justice; Official NYC ADA25 event

The Disability Narrative Imperative

July 13, 2015: Lights! Camera! Access! 2.0 Think Tank hosted by New York University (NYU) Steinhardt and Ability Lab; Official NYC ADA25 event

June 17, 2015: Forum on Workplace Inclusion’s Diversity Insights – Lights! Camera! Access! 2.0

University of St. Thomas; Minneapolis

Moderated by:

Tari Hartman Squire

Panelists included:

BBDO, Wells Fargo, University of St.Thomas

April 10, 2015: Career Opportunities for Students with Disabilities: Employer Community;  Atlanta

Moderated by:

Tari Hartman Squire

Panelists included:

Avalyn Jackson, AT&T

David Martin, Delta Airlines

December 2, 2014: Universum; Philadelphia

Disability Etiquette & Interacting with Candidates with Disabilities

Keynote:

Disability Through a “Brand” New Lens – 

November 20, 2014: Career Opportunities for Students with Disabilities: Employer Best Practices PanelPhiladelphia

Moderated by:

Tari Hartman Squire

Panelists included:

Wendy Miller, GE

Jayson Mamaclay, PwC

Lori Daley, Northrop Grumman

October 9, 2014: University of Eastern Kentucky 

Keynote – Lights! Camera! Access! 2.0

September 30, 2014: US Business Leadership Network; Orlando

The Diz Biz

Moderated by:

Apoorva Gandhi, Marriott

Panelists included:

Tari Hartman Squire, EIN SOF Communications

Jessica Rafuse, Starbucks

Patrick Florville, Florville Catalyst

 

October 30, 2013: Featured Panel – Out & Equal Workplace Summit
The Intersection of LGBT and Disability Issues:
Co-moderated by Tari Hartman Squire and Jennifer Brown Consulting

Panelists included:
Former DOL Assistant Secretary Kathleen Martinez
Elizabeth Dixon, AT&T
Geri Jewell, Facts of Life, Deadwood and I’m Walking As Straight As I Can
Deb Dagit, Deb Dagit Diversity

November 7, 2013: Career Opportunities for Students with Disabilities Employer Best Practices Panel
For six years, Tari Hartman Squire has moderated the COSD Employer Best Practices Panel at the COSD Annual National Conference, now in its 14th year. This year’s panel included Lowe’s, Microsoft and Northern Trust.

November 8, 2013: Career Opportunities for Students with Disabilities Employer Community
EY’s Lori Golden and Jennifer Greer joined COSD Executive Director Alan Muir and Tari Hartman Squire in a Section 503 “think tank” entitled Workforce Strategies to Implement Section 503: An Interactive Discussion Among Employers. 

Whether you are a corporation looking to develop a solid recruiting pipeline of college students and recent grads with disabilities, including veterans; or leadership development for managers with disabilities; or a GSA Federal Contractor or Subcontractor concerned about compliance with U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contracts Compliance Programs (OFCCP) strengthened Section 503 regulations or VEVRAA that took effect March 24, 2014, EIN SOF, its partners and clients have expertise to put more “D” in your “C” suite.

To learn more about EIN SOF and partner trainings, presentations and workshops, click here.

Strategic Alliances

Whether you are a corporation, non-profit, government entity or small business, it is essential to zero in on prospective customers, build a sustainable talent pipeline, and replicate your best practices. To achieve these goals, you will need strategic alliances with national and grass-roots cross-disability, disability-specific and diversity organizations.

As COSD’s disability strategic marketing and development consulting agency of record, EIN SOF can customize strategic alliances to address all of your recruiting and employment needs to build a solid and sustainable talent pipeline, no matter what industry sector.

Tari Hartman Squire and Alexandra Bennewith, SVP of Government Affairs for United Spinal Association, co-chair the National Disability Leadership Alliance (NDLA) Employment Team. NDLA is a national cross-disability coalition that represents the authentic voice of people with disabilities. NDLA is led by 14 national organizations run by people with disabilities with grassroots constituencies around the country.

The NDLA steering committee includes: ADAPT, the American Association of People with Disabilities, the American Council of the Blind, the Association of Programs for Rural Independent Living, the Autistic Self Advocacy Network, the Hearing Loss Association of America, Little People of America, the National Association of the Deaf, the National Coalition for Mental Health Recovery, the National Council on Independent Living, the National Federation of the Blind, Not Dead Yet, Self Advocates Becoming Empowered, and the United Spinal Association.

Strategic alliances are also beneficial to members and leadership of your Employee Resource Groups (ERGs), Business Councils and Affinity Groups, to provide valuable insights in the workplace, marketplace and communities in which you serve.

Tapping EIN SOF’s extensive range of disability, diversity, corporate, media, academic, grass-roots, non-profit and foundation partners, together, we can build the kind of strategic alliances that drive sales, awareness and propel you to become an employer of choice.

To learn more about employment-related dynamic strategic alliances, click here.

Diversity Strategies - Lights! Camera! Access! 2.0

Ruderman TV Challenge appears in front of multiple TV screens

Ruderman TV Challenge

Lights! Camera! Access! 2.0 is honored to collaborate with the Ruderman Family Foundation and Daryl “Chill” Mitchell on the creation of the “Ruderman TV Challenge” to increase performers with disabilities in this pilot season.

 

The Ruderman Family Foundation continues its work in Hollywood with a new initiative to transform the landscape of television by challenging networks, cable and content creators to case more actors with disabilities in this pilot season.

The Ruderman Family Foundation is launching a new project to impact the visibility of actors with disabilities: the Ruderman TV Challenge. At a time when the discussion around diversity in Hollywood is garnering great attention, disability is still being left out of the conversation. Approximately 20% of Americans have a disability, which makes them the largest minority in the U.S. However, depictions of disability in TV, film and advertising are consistently much lower—a staggering discrepancy of representation.

 

But disability is a fundamental part of the human experience and needs to be included in depictions of diversity. This project by the Foundation builds on the critically-acclaimed Ruderman White Paper on the Employment of Actors with Disabilities, a 2016 study which found that only 5% of all television characters with disabilities on screen were portrayed by performers with disabilities. It also comes as the next step after the Foundation hosted the Ruderman Studio-Wide Roundtable on Disability Inclusion in Los Angeles attended by around 200 industry insiders this past November.

The Ruderman TV Challenge was developed by the Foundation in collaboration with Tari Hartman Squire, creator of the Lights! Camera! Access! 2.0 Collaborative, a veteran of the disability inclusion movement in Hollywood and with Daryl “Chill” Mitchell, a long-time diversity and inclusion advocate, producer, and actor well-known for his role in the CBS hit show NCIS: New Orleans. The challenge is designed to reach television and cable executives and content creators with a very simple request: audition and cast more actors with disabilities this pilot season. The Foundation will track the pilots that are picked up for production and study which content creators and networks excelled at the challenge.

 

“We are hoping to see an increase of people with disabilities in any roles, including in the background and as secondary characters. Maybe a bank teller who is an amputee, or a college teacher who is a wheelchair user,” said Jay Ruderman, president of the Ruderman Family Foundation. “Our goal is to increase the overall visibility of people with disabilities in everyday situations on TV. We firmly believe that simply having greater visibility of people with disabilities not only reflects reality in America today, but can positively impact society’s attitudes toward people with disabilities.”

 

“We think that the stigma surrounding disability in the entertainment world may be at a turning point,” said Tari Hartman Squire. “An increasing number of scripted shows on the air, like Speechless authentically portray people with disabilities and are widely embraced by audiences. Networks are noticing that having authentic disability-inclusive diversity means successful business. Diversity is a business imperative, inclusion is a choice.”

 

The results of this extensive project will be released prior to the Emmys in September 2017. Stay tuned and thanks for participating in the Ruderman TV Challenge.

 

Lights! Camera! Access! 2.o

Media has unique power to shatter myths about 59 million Americans with disabilities. Tari Hartman Squire’s EIN SOF Communications (specializing in disability-inclusive diversity strategic marketing and employment) and Loreen Arbus created and produce the LCA2.0 Initiative with three objectives:

 

  • Increase disability employment of people with disabilities in front of/behind the camera;
  • Improve disability portrayals;
  • Enhance access to media with captions and audio descriptions.

In the fourth quarter of 2016, Lights! Camera! Access! 2.0 produced three LCA2.0 “Call-to-Action” Summits with Resume Review, Speed Interviews, Flash Mentoring, networking and informational panel called “How to Make It in the Media” moderated by Anna Pakman:

Thanks to the 2016  LCA2.0 Summit hosts:

October 31, 2016 – CUNY John Jay College of Criminal Justice

November 14, 2016 – The White House

December 12, 2016 – The White House, hosted by Gallaudet University

The three 2016 Summits brought together 25 media employers and mentors with disabilities to meet 75 high school, college students, recent grads and transitioning youth with disabilities from CA, DC, IL, GA, MD, NY, PA, and VA.  Disabilities of the participants included: Amputee; Autistic; Bipolar; CP; Deaf; Depression; Hard of Hearing; Learning Disabilities; Low Vision. There was a diverse combination of participants of color with disabilities, including LGBT; The participants were both traditional and non-traditional aged and GPAs ranged from 2.70 to 4.0. Majors included broadcasting, digital arts, acting, directing, journalism, film, disability studies, international studies, social work, communications, media arts, entertainment technology, digital cinema and new media.

The LCA2.0 Collaborative includes EIN SOF Communications, The Loreen Arbus Foundation, ADA Legacy Project’s DisBeat, CUNY Coalition of Students with Disabilities, CUNY LEADS, Deaf Film Camp, Inclusion Film Camp, Gallaudet University, National Disability Mentoring Coalition, National Technical Institute of the Deaf, NY Women in Film & Television, PolicyWorks, SignMation and others

On July 13 and July 14, 2015, we convened two Lights! Camera! Access! 2.0 Think Tanks in New York that were official NYC ADA25 events to coincide with the 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act.  Awards were given to CBS and the FCC for their disability-inclusive diversity leadership.

2015 LCA2.0 Think Tanks to coincide with ADA25

July 13 was focused on emerging digital platforms and included a keynote by Vinton Cerf, Chief Internet Evangelist of Google and one of the two inventors or the Internet. Presentation by other companies included AT&T, Comcast, Panasonic and Yahoo!

July 14 was focused on the Disability Narrative Imperative and featured unions, networks, industry associations, disability leaders and storytellers with disabilities across a variety of genres such as theatre, interactive, gaming, radio, film, broadcasting and television.

The CBS News/LCA2.0 internship is entering its third year. More internships and scholarships are in the development pipeline and will be announced soon.

If you would like to invest in Lights! Camera! Access! 2.0, develop a co-branded internship or scholarship, our fiscal agent is New York Women in Film and Television, To invest, click here.

To receive updates on Lights! Camera! Access! 2.0, and explore investment opportunities,  click here.

LCA2.0 Success

Accepted by the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) as a two-year “Commitment to Action,” EIN SOF Communications, Inc. and The Loreen Arbus Foundation are teaming up to produce this comprehensive initiative that includes disability-inclusive diversity advertising, entertainment, interactive and broadcast “Think Tanks” and “Call-to-Action” summits to improve disability portrayals on large, small and personal screens, increase employment of civilians and veterans with disabilities in front of the camera and behind the scenes, and increase accessible entertainment for audiences with a variety of disabilities.

Check out our Clinton Global Initiative Commitment to Action, click here.

Check out Loreen and Tari’s CGI Commitment to Action captioned video in sign language, click here.

We are also developing disability-inclusive diversity scholarships and internships to activate the next generation of diverse media professionals. Details are being finalized so check back soon.

Best practices and success stories in advertising that tap the $220 billion disability market include Honey Maid’s This is Wholesome campaign by Droga5 with disability rights attorney Stephanie Woodward; Wells Fargo’s Sign Language commercial by BBDO; Duracell’s Trust Your Power commercial with Seattle Seahawks fullback Derrick Coleman; Petco’s Co-Pilots spot; and Guinness’ Wheelchair Basketball commercial, by BBDO NY.

Disability-savvy television shows include Switched at Birth; American Horror StoryCSI: Crime Scene Investigation; Breaking Bad; Push Girls, NCIS: New Orleans and Madam Secretary that employs performers with disabilities in the background to more accurately reflect the 8.38% (non foreign service) employment rate of people with disabilities and veterans (with a  30% disability) that work at the real State Department.

Lights! Camera! Access! 2.0

Lights! Camera! Access! 2.0 informational flyer and logo

Lights! Camera! Access! 2.0 informational flyer and logo

Background:

Lights! Camera! Access! 2.0 is built upon the success of the Lights! Camera! Access! “Call-to-Action Summit” held in conjunction with the 20th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA20), and hosted by the Diversity Committee of the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences and the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP).

Lights! Camera! Access! 2.0 Think Tanks and Summits will bring together advertising, entertainment, interactive and broadcast executives with disability-inclusive diversity thought leaders, universities, unions and grass roots organizations for day-long events (in New York, Los Angeles and other major media markets)  to build a more sustainable talent pipeline with our strategic partners such as Career Opportunities for Students with Disabilities (COSD), PolicyWorks, Deaf FIlm Camp and Inclusion in the Arts, to name a few