While many groups in the entertainment industry fight daily for equality, those of us who have disabilities can often feel overlooked regardless if intentional or not. This is true for actors with disabilities. Mow, NBCUniversal has pledged to take what is being called a “bold stand” to audition more disabled actors in a report from Deadline which outlines the commitment and reveals new guidelines.
“NBCUniversal remains committed to creating content that authentically reflects the world we live in and increasing opportunities for those with disabilities is an integral part of that,” said Janine Jones-Clark, Executive Vice President, Inclusion – Talent & Content, Film, Television & Streaming, NBCUniversal. “We are proud to join the Ruderman Family Foundation pledge as calls to action like theirs are important and hold the industry accountable of the work we still need to do in order to see systemic change.”
“The Ruderman Family Foundation is thrilled to see NBCUniversal commit to our guidelines and dedicate themselves further to casting people with disabilities in their productions,” said Jay Ruderman, President of the Ruderman Family Foundation. “By having such an influential entity like NBCUniversal take this bold stand, we hope to continue to see others join us in striving to create more opportunities for people with disabilities in entertainment.”
The Ruderman Family Foundation’s guidelines include, among other items, recognizing that disability is central to diversity, that the disability community comprises one of the largest minority groups in the country, and that people with disabilities face exclusion in front of and behind the camera. The guidelines hold that increasing auditions for actors with disabilities is a critical step towards inclusion.