Channel 4 launches UK’s first sign language-only TV ad

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As you’ll have probably noticed from our frantic Tweeting, exclusive interviews and opening ceremony recap – we’re all pretty excited about the Paralympics here at Enable.

Why? Because we know that nothing brings nations together, promotes diversity and encoruages inclusivity quite like the Games.

Turns out Maltesers are also looking forward to sharing  in the positivity that surrounds the event. To celebrate the start of Rio 2016 they are set to air the UK’s first ever sign language-only TV ad.

The 30-second ad will first air without subtitles and will feature disabled actors in the lead roles Later showings of the ad will feature subtitles so viewers can get in on the disability joke.

The groundbreaking ad is one of three that will air, all inspired by real-life stories from disabled people.

The campaign was created after Mars won Channel 4’s ‘Superhumans Wanted’ competition offering £1m in free TV ad space to the strongest campaign featuring disability and disabled talent.

Michele Oliver, vice president of marketing at Mars Chocolate UK, said: “As one of the UK’s biggest advertisers, we have a responsibility and a role to play in reflecting diversity in everyday media.

“This is a first step for us, and with a fifth of the UK population living with a disability, and the nation focused on this great sporting event, this is the right time to join the conversation.”

Channel 4 will be broadcasting the ad during the Games as part of their diverse Paralympics vision in which three quarters of its presenters and 10% of its production staff have disabilities. In their Rio Olympic TV ad promotion there were no fewer than 120 people with disabilities in a cast of over 150.

Channel 4’s coverage of the Rio Paralympics will be hosted by Clare Balding and actor RJ Mitte, who played Walter White’s disabled son in Breaking Bad.

A company getting behind diversity and disabilities? Better add that to the list of things worth celebrating.

What do you think of the adverts? Let us know on Twitter and Facebook! 


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