While there have been significant efforts made in celebrating the disability community, seen in brand campaigns such as Unilever’s Degree’s Sick Beats, for example, the ad industry still significantly lacks disability inclusion, especially when it comes to hiring new talent.
In an effort to put disability inclusion at the forefront, Cercil, a comprehensive care center for the blind in Lima, Peru, collaborated with Havas Group Peru to create “Models That Will Be Seen,” a campaign aimed at hiring blind diverse talent. According to Cercil, with only 23% of visually impaired Peruvians finding work, the campaign creates a space where blind talent can become actual ad models.
Havas Group Peru released a two-minute spot featuring a group of visually impaired people playfully posing with different models of sunglasses. The spot highlights that no one else is better to model sunglasses in advertising campaigns than those who have been wearing them for a lifetime. It ends with a call to action and a montage of ad mock-ups starring the models for brands like Hyundai, Claro, GrandVision and Scotiabank.
Most importantly, the work doubles as an actual ad that these models can add to their professional portfolios.
Shifting hiring practices
Although we’ve seen brands dynamically shift marketing, hiring and accessibility practices, such as MOD Pizza’s latest hiring policy and Ford’s FordWorks initiative in support of disabled and marginalized communities, according to Havas Group Peru, more progress needs to be made before a real change in inclusion can be see within the disability community.
As noted by the agency, one of those practices in generating wider visibility is creating real opportunities that professionally benefit communities in need.