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Disability drama helps Sam from Casualty see the light


A dramatic new campaign film challenging public perceptions of disability is to reach thousands of extra viewers nationwide via the TUC‘s training network of trade union tutors.

Talk, produced for the Disability Rights Commission (DRC), stars ex Casualty actor Jonathan Kerrigan (Sam Colloby) as Robert, a non-disabled business executive, who is transported into an imaginary world where disability is the norm.

The film is the centrepiece of Actions Speak Louder Than Words, the DRC’s debut campaign, promoting equality for disabled people.

To help the DRC in its campaign to challenge commonly held perceptions of disability, the TUC has pledged to distribute video copies of the film to its network of tutors, who will in turn run specially designed training courses based on the film’s contents.

In partnership with the Royal National Institute For Deaf People (RNID), the TUC has agreed to:

  • send copies of the DRC film to the 250 trainers who, every year, run courses for some 30,000 trade union reps at further education colleges around the UK
  • design an activity pack based on the film, to be inserted in a promotional toolkit advertising the availability of the film to all tutors, and create a disability training session in conjunction with the DRC.
  • mail all union-affiliated education officers about the TUC’s commitment and encourage them to distribute the information
  • hold screenings of Talk for TUC staff and showcase the film in the foyer of the TUC’s London headquarters.

John Monks, General Secretary of the TUC, said: “We are really pleased to be assisting the DRC in its campaign to get people thinking about disability. Too often we forget that the simplest of tasks we take for granted can cause massive problems for people with disabilities. If every trade union rep who sees the film passes its positive message on to their workmates, we will have reached many thousands of workers.”

James Strachan, Chief Executive, RNID and a Disability Rights Commissioner said, “We are delighted that the TUC is leading the way in proving that actions speak louder than words. Talk is a brilliant way to help change attitudes towards disability. It is high time that employers capitalised on the talents and potential of disabled people. The TUC has tremendous ability to spread the message”

Bert Massie, Chairman of the DRC said: “This campaign, our first since our launch earlier this year, relies heavily on the tremendous support we have received from the TUC and other partners. We hope that the TUC’s generous and very practical contribution will be replicated by lots of other organisations and businesses across the country.”

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