The TV Access Project

What is the TV Access Project?
Access on Productions
The 5 A's
Access in Studios & Facilities

 

What is the TV Access Project (TAP)?

In Spring 2022, nine of the UK’s main broadcasters and streamers joined forces to substantively and permanently improve access for Deaf, Disabled and/or Neurodivergent talent across the TV industry.

The TV Access Project (TAP) has been created by the BBC, Channel 4, Britbox International, Disney+ UK, ITV, Paramount, Prime Video, Sky and UKTV, with support from industry body CDN (the Creative Diversity Network) and PACT, representing the indie sector.

TAP was formed in response to the campaign by Underlying Health Condition (UHC), which was set up by disabled creatives Genevieve Barr, Katie Player and Holly Lubran, along with screenwriter Jack Thorne, following his impassioned MacTaggart Lecture at Edinburgh TV Festival in 2021.

TAP is supported by TripleC DANC (Disabled Artists Networking Community) and DDPTV (Deaf & Disabled People in TV).

Together all these organisations want to ensure an inclusive television production sector for disabled talent. TAP aims to improve access provision substantively and permanently across the UK TV industry, looking at solutions that are pan-genre, considering both scripted and unscripted.

TAP complements the work individual broadcasters and streamers are already doing to address access for disabled talent in the TV industry and intends to be a forum for best practice. 

TAP is looking to expand its membership, and in Autumn 2022 will be approaching other broadcasters and streamers.

For more information about TAP, please contact Nicole Steven in the C4 Creative Diversity team – Nsteven@channel4.co.uk     

Access on Productions

In order to ensure the full and equal inclusion of Deaf, Disabled and/or Neurodivergent talent, both behind and in front of the camera, TAP has produced a set of simple guidelines and principles which any organisation in the industry is welcome to adopt. 

These are known as The 5 As :

  • Anticipate
  • Ask
  • Assess
  • Adjust
  • Advocate

The guidelines are deliberately not detailed tips or technical instructions, as these can change over time and it would be impossible to provide a definitive list of every access requirement, reasonable adjustment or best practice approach in every circumstance for every individual or production. 

It is for each organisation who adopts them to agree and own how they intend to implement these guidelines. However, some guidance is provided about how the standards could be put into practice.

 

 

They are also available below in British Sign Language:

An audio version is available upon request, please contact NSteven@channel4.co.uk to gain access to it.

Access in Studios & Facilities

In the course of their work, TAP have recognised that a significant barrier to progress in the area of inclusion for Deaf, Disabled and Neurodivergent talent is a lack of access provision at facilities companies and in studio spaces, despite duties under Equality Act 2010 and related to Building Regulations. 

A survey conducted by Jack Thorne's Underlying Health Condition campaign in 2021 revealed an industry which is largely inaccessible, denying disabled people the right to participate; particularly concerning was the lack of accessible toilets, all-round step free access, and crucially accessible fire regulations that they discovered in studio spaces and facilities.

In the light of this, TAP’s intention is to come together as an industry with all major studios, post-production houses and facilities companies to encourage the development of new industry standards for inclusivity in their workspaces as well.

In August 2022, a group of TAP members published an open letter to all major studios, post-production houses and facilities companies inviting them to join a roundtable in Autumn 2022, to agree the path towards this together. 

Once the plan and timeframe are laid out and the industry standards have been produced, as broadcasters and streamers, TAP members would expect those studios, post-production houses and facilities companies to adopt those industry standards and will collectively commit to working with those that do when considering new UK commissions.

 

If you would like this letter in any alternative formats, please contact Nicole Steven in the C4 Creative Diversity team – Nsteven@channel4.co.uk

Contact for more information:

Nicole Steven - Creative Diversity & Disability Project Manager

Email: Nsteven@channel4.co.uk