Half victory for Arts Council England in disability discrimination case

22 Sep 2021

The funder has been cleared of indirect discrimination but its lawyer admits "there was perhaps a lack of a full understanding" about its own recruitment policy.

Win-win for disabled arts-lovers and the sector

22 Sep 2021

While anxiety about attending events remains high amongst disabled people, Anna Torregiani says the Covid online content boom has seen revolutionary opportunities that could improve access for good.

Being at home in Manchester

landscape image of Manchester's HOME venue
14 Sep 2021

A group of artists from Deaf, disabled and neurodiverse communities have been working on a project to transform accessibility. Nickie Miles-Wildin reports on its successes.

70% of shielding musicians facing financial hardship

13 Sep 2021

The music industry is urging better financial support for shielding musicians after research found 70% are facing financial hardship.

Nearly 60% said they hadn’t received any financial support during the pandemic and almost 40% say they must continue shielding beyond the end of Covid restrictions.

Musicians' Union General Secretary Horace Trubridge said shielding musicians are being “left behind with no support”.

Alongside The Ivors Academy, the union is asking the Government to extend furlough and self-employment support for shielding musicians until they can safely return to work.

“The Government must provide clearer, accessible guidance, and ensure that this group of workers can access financial support to stay safe and not be forced to choose between going to work and their health,” Trubridge added.

Making content fully accessible

a sign with a logo of a person in a wheelchair, signalling access to a step free route
08 Sep 2021

The shift to digital has been beneficial to many, but Ash Mann is particularly interested in what it could mean for D/deaf, disabled and neurodivergent people.

Curators of the future

exhibition and showcase
07 Sep 2021

Being disabled in the visual arts sector has presented galleries with serious challenges. But Mike Layward is optimistic about programmes which promote much needed change.

Enhancing artist and audience experience

AH AW (OR) OO EE UR (UR) The Long Vowels, 2020
07 Sep 2021

Issues of access have beleaguered artists and audiences alike. Jamie Wyld explores how access streams can be used in innovative ways to enhance both artist and audience experience.

Sensory and inclusive theatre

outdoor theatre production
07 Sep 2021

All cultural organisations are concerned with making their work more accessible. A new report by Maria Varvarigou on sensory and inclusive theatre for disabled children and young people provides a model for doing just that.

Half of disabled music workers don’t disclose conditions

03 Sep 2021

Music industry workers are putting their health and safety at risk over fear of negative reactions and damaging their career prospects.

TV industry 'ignorant' of legal duties to disabled staff

23 Aug 2021

Senior television workers are unaware of their legal obligations to their disabled colleagues, driving many out of the industry

80% of disabled TV workers believe their disability has damaged their career and 77% say their career options are limited, according to a small survey commissioned by Birmingham City University's Sir Lenny Henry Centre for Media Diversity.

Respondents said there is "little understanding of the Equalities Act" and some continued in a potentially harmful role because they feared the consequences of asking for reasonable adjustments.


Entry level jobs like being a runner can be a barrier to more disabled people joining the industry. Some respondents said they struggled to find work outside of disability programming; others chose to use their insight to support this work. 

The research also noted a recent trend among broadcasters to relocate to regional centres creates issues for disabled staff, such as finding suitable accommodation and rebuilding support networks. 

The report was produced by disabled journalist Kate Ansell: "What's striking is the consistency of the experiences described and the simplicity of some of the solutions," she said.

"It's crucial that the industry acts upon what it is being told." 


Disabled audiences will eschew venues with lax Covid rules

19 Aug 2021

Two thirds would choose venues with Covid certification on entry over those taking a laissez-faire approach. 

Self-taped auditions must be reformed, Equity says

man learning lines in front of camera
17 Aug 2021

A new best practice guide aims to eliminate unrealistic deadlines and overly long scripts to address auditioners’ anxieties.

National Plan for Music education revived with expert panel

12 Aug 2021

DfE has resurrected the long-delayed plan as industry and researchers warn music A-levels could disappear from some regions by 2033.

UK to create arts access card for disabled audiences

two girls playing the Cello
04 Aug 2021

The free card will enable “seamless, barrier-free” booking to boost audiences’ confidence to return to live events, building on a model already used by 38,000 people.

ACE access support costs £1m during pandemic

03 Aug 2021

There's no word on a long overdue upgrade to Grantium - the reason for most requests. Those providing access support say the system must change.

Freedom Day? Arts organisations double down on restrictions amid vaccine passport U-turn

22 Jul 2021

Venues are pleading for leniency on isolation rules that threaten to derail their reopening, but audiences remain hesitant.

Investing in disabled artists

an outdoor theatre performance
16 Jun 2021

A commissioning programme in support of disabled artists was inundated with applications. Jo Verrent says the sector must increase its commitment to this under-served community.

Dancers lead the arts in Queen’s Birthday Honours

Photo of Hilary Carty
15 Jun 2021

More than 60 arts professionals are included in this year’s Queen’s Birthday Honours list, the most ethnically diverse to date. 

'Lack of trust' in disabled audiences' access upon reopening

26 May 2021

Just 7% of disabled arts professionals are in full-time employment according to a new survey that paints a "shockingly fragile" picture of disability in the cultural sector.

Employment guide to 'eliminate barriers' for disabled people in music

20 May 2021

The handbook aims to improve representation of disabled people in the music industry as a survey finds half have withdrawn job applications over accessibility concerns.


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