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Actor/Model and Deaf Activist Nyle DiMarco Joins in Launch of Historic “Hollywood Toolkit” to Help Industry Achieve Goals of Equitable Hiring & Authentic Representation of Disabilities

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Actor/Model and Deaf Activist Nyle DiMarco Joins in Launch of Historic “Hollywood Disability Inclusion Toolkit” to Help Industry Achieve Goals of Equitable Hiring & Authentic Representation of Disabilities
Nyle DiMarco sitting in a car

Nyle DiMarco

Reality TV Pioneer Jonathan Murray, RespectAbility President Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi, Hollywood, Health & Society Director Kate Folb and California Endowment’s Jose Plaza to lead March 20 breakfast discussion about the path to inclusion of people with disabilities.

What: Official unveiling of The Hollywood Disability Inclusion Toolkit, a project of RespectAbility, a nonprofit organization that fights stigma and advances opportunities for people with disabilities. Announcement of new partnership between RespectAbility and and Hollywood, Health & Society, a project of the USC Annenberg Norman Lear Center to educate the movie/TV industry on how to ensure people with disabilities are included on both sides of the camera in the stories that Hollywood tells.
Where: Bunim/Murray Productions Studio
Glendale, CA 91201
Who: Nyle DiMarco, actor, model and activist, and the first Deaf person to win America’s Next Top Model and Dancing With The Stars

Jonathan Murray, reality TV pioneer, executive producer of Born This Way, Project Runway and Autism: The Musical

Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi, President, RespectAbility

Kate Folb, Director, Hollywood, Health & Society

Jose Plaza, California Endowment

Why: With Hollywood striving to boost diversity and inclusion, one group consistently is overlooked: People with disabilities. One in five Americans has a disability, but is represented by fewer than two percent of TV and fewer than three percent of movie characters. In recent years none of the characters with disabilities in leading films were from an underrepresented group or the LGBTQ community, while non-disabled actors portray 95 percent of characters with disabilities on television.
When: Tuesday, March 20, 2018
8:30 AM Breakfast begins
8:45 AM Program begins
NOTE: Breakfast will be served.

RespectAbility is a nonprofit organization fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities for people with disabilities.

Meet the Author

Lauren Appelbaum
Lauren Appelbaum

Lauren Appelbaum is the Vice President, Communications, of RespectAbility, a nonprofit organization fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities for and with people with disabilities, and managing editor of The RespectAbility Report, a publication at the intersection of disability and politics. Previously she was a digital researcher with the NBC News political unit. As an individual with an acquired invisible disability - Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy - she writes about the intersection of disability, employment, Hollywood and politics. From entertainment professionals to presidential campaigns, journalists to philanthropists, she conducts trainings on the why and how to be more inclusive and accessible. Behind the scenes in the entertainment industry, Appelbaum engages decision makers and creatives to improve the quality and number of authentic, diverse and inclusive presentations of people with disabilities on TV and film so audiences can see people with disabilities as vital contributors in America and around the world. She and her team have consulted on projects with Amazon, Disney/ABC Television, NBCUniversal, Netflix, and The Walt Disney Studios, among others. Appelbaum also enriches the pool of disabled talent in Hollywood by nurturing and connecting them to those who can assist with their careers, both on the creative and business sides of the industry. She is the author of The Hollywood Disability Inclusion Toolkit, which was created to help entertainment professionals to be as inclusive of people with disabilities as possible, and the creator of an innovative Lab Program for entertainment professionals with disabilities working behind the camera. To reach her, email LaurenA@RespectAbility.org.

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