COMMUNICATIONS NEWS: Leonard Cheshire Visible campaign targets agencies

Leonard Cheshire will target advertising agencies resistant to the idea of using disabled models as part of its Visible campaign.

The charity aims to change social attitudes by getting more disabled people used in mainstream advertising. Its Visible campaign, set up four years ago, got companies to commit to integrating disabled people in their advertising campaigns. Companies such as Marks and Spencer, the Co-operative Bank and telecommunications giant T-Mobile promised to feature disabled people in at least one ad a year.

The campaign has been hugely successful, according to Jean Collingwood, interim director of public affairs for Leonard Cheshire, but progress was limited by the reluctance of some advertising agencies.

"Disabled people spend about £40 billion a year and many agencies have realised the potential in representing them,

said Collingwood. "But some still don't think disability is attractive somehow, or that it's too much work."

The charity runs bespoke disability training packages for its commercial partners and is now considering how this could be rolled out to their ad agencies.

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