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‘It’s just so basic’: Why firms should be employing disabled people both in front of and behind the cameras

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20.09.2021

Law firm Irwin Mitchell’s new campaign "The human touch" – which features real clients sharing personal stories about the life-changing outcomes of their cases – deserves to be applauded.

Not only does it show deeply sensitive real-life stories – such as that of a client who was left with cerebral palsy after suffering a brain injury due to medical negligence – but it was born of a dedication to inclusivity that saw a production team made up of almost 60% of differently abled people in the most senior roles.

Created by Merkle B2B, Annex and director Oscar Carris, the project was shot by blind photographer Ian Treherne, who was mentored by Rankin; make-up was by artist Bryanna Ryder, who is a wheelchair user and has partial hearing; and music was by blind and autistic musician Derek Paravicini. A behind-the-scenes "statement film" captured by wheelchair user and director Owen Tooth will be launched on 27 September during National Inclusion Week.

Treherne, who also shot behind-the-scenes images and portraits of the athletes for Channel 4’s Tokyo Paralympic Games 2020 July campaign "Super. Human." spoke to Campaign about the two-day shoot.

He said: “Being a blind photographer is a great way to confuse people and hurt their brains a little bit. You can see them thinking: ‘Is he allowed to take photos? But he can't see’. I get that a lot.

“There is a lot of questioning about what I'm able to do and I always say, ‘Well, just have a look at the work and you can judge if it's any good’.”

Treherne has a degenerative eye condition and is legally blind with just 5% eyesight. He was born profoundly deaf and later in his teenage years started to lose his eyesight. He has a condition called RP Type 2, commonly known as tunnel vision.

Treherne said: “When........

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