Survey: Public Not Concerned About Lack Of Actors With
By Dave Reynolds, Inclusion Daily Express
May 25, 2005
LONDON, ENGLAND--Disability advocates in the United Kingdom were reminded this week just how far society has to go to recognize their rights.
A poll conducted on behalf of the cerebral palsy charity Scope, the results of which were released Monday, found that 78 percent of people surveyed considered it "acceptable" for an actor without a disability to play a character with a disability. Just one-third of respondents said they felt there were not enough actors with disabilities in film, stage, and television.
"Although there are many budding disabled actors out there looking for jobs, the opportunities are few, and the roles are frequently typecast as medical or tokenistic," said wheelchair user Luke Hamill, who plays a character with a spinal cord injury in the television police drama "The Bill".
"This survey highlights the desperate need for more creative script writing and much more inclusive casting."
A Scope spokesperson said in a press statement: "The findings will come as a blow to disabled actors and should send a strong warning to film-makers and casting directors to be aware of deeply held prejudices."
The poll also revealed that 80 percent of the country's leisure venues, including cinemas and theaters, are not accessible to many patrons with disabilities.