Lloyds, BT and Virgin Media back push to raise awareness of disability in the workplace

Employees from BT, HSBC UK, Lloyds Banking Group, Lloyd’s of London, Nationwide, Reed Smith, Scope and Virgin Media will appear in a Channel 4 film aimed at raising awareness of the #PurpleUpLight movement, which celebrates the economic contribution made by disabled people.

A number of major brands including BT, Lloyds and Virgin Media are backing a push by Channel 4 to recognise the impact people with disabilities have on the workplace and their economic contribution.

Employees from companies including HSBC UK, Lloyd’s of London, Lloyds Banking Group, Nationwide, Reed Smith, Scope, Virgin Media and BT will appear in a film to be broadcast on Channel 4 this weekend that aims to offer an insight into the worries disabled people in the workplace might face.

The film, created by 4Sales’ creative arm PL4Y, shows employees from the eight brands detailing concerns, including that there might be an extra cost or that it might take them longer to complete a task. It also features The Last Leg presenter Adam Hills, who encourages businesses to help disabled people find careers where they can thrive.

The employees in the ad have jobs ranging from associate lawyer to customer transformation executive to network engineer.

The film will first air on Channel 4 this evening (30 November) after The Last Leg. It will then air throughout the weekend and on Monday (3 December) which is International Day of Persons with Disabilities. The brands involved have all funded the film and helped with its content.

Channel 4 marketing boss Dan Brooke, who is also the broadcaster’s board diversity champion, says: “In the UK there are seven million people of working age with health conditions or disabilities and an astonishing 50% are unemployed. This represents a huge wealth of talent which is simply going to waste. And it’s not just the people themselves who are losing out, businesses are losing out as is Britain PLC.”

The advertising push aims to raise awareness of the #PurpleLightUp movement, created by PurpleSpace, which celebrates the economic contribution made by disabled people. It encourages people to recognise disability by wearing purple and businesses to mark 3 December by using purple in their logos and on their websites.

Alongside the film, Channel 4 will also be broadcasting the first ever live signing of the Channel 4 News on Monday, while #PurpleLightUp idents and special continuity announcements will also air.