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Disability Equity & Opportunities in the Creative Industries

June 1, 2023 @ 9:30 am - 1:30 pm

This seminar provides an opportunity to hear from industry experts, business owners and individuals on initiatives and pathways for people with disabilities to thrive and succeed in the creative industries.

The Northern Ireland creative sector offers a wide range of opportunities from TV, film, radio production, performing arts and digital media, providing opportunities for innovators to adapt, revolutionise and reimagine ways to engage and influence today’s audiences. But where do people with disabilities fit in?

In the UK, one in five of the working age population are classified as disabled. Yet a small percentage of those with a disability feel that there are opportunities in the creative industries. For example:

  • Only a quarter feel they have access to the contacts and networks needed to progress their creative career (vs. 62% of general respondents).
  • 88% cite the two biggest barriers s: lack of employer understanding of ‘reasonable adjustments’, and awareness of disability issues among colleagues. In fact many candidates choose not to disclose disability to potential or current employers.

Formal training in key areas like production techniques, idea generation, technical skills, communication skills, as well as a general lack of employer engagement are all significant factors. So, how do we change this? How do we offer genuine opportunity?

Innovation Factory is very excited to be partnering with BBC, CINE,One In Five, and Triplevision Productions, to hear about personal journeys and showcase how people with disabilities can access career paths in the Screen and Creative industries in Northern Ireland.

Attend the event to:

  • Gain insight into opportunities and initiatives that are available to those with disabilities within the screen and creative industries.
  • Hear from individuals with disabilities who are thriving in the sector.
  • Get a fresh perspective and spark inspiration to take the next step on your career path in the creative industries.
  • Ask questions and connect with leading experts and like-minded people in the industry.


In addition to a presentations from the BBC, the event will be chaired by Eamonn Devlin Company Director of One in Five and Triplevision Productions – One in Five is an organisation with disability at its core. We are not only here to serve the disabled community through the work we do, but we are committed to ensuring that we have individuals from the community within our organisation at every level from our management through to our production team.

Guest Speakers

Nichola Garde: Nichola is the Project Manager for Elevate, a BBC scheme to progress industry-wide disabled production talent who have experienced blockers in their careers whilst also encouraging content suppliers to actively seek and include disabled talent within their production teams.

India Sasha: NI TikToker and disability-rights activist is taking the social media world by storm. India says when she was younger she never saw anyone on the red carpet with a limb disability like her – but she has become ‘that girl’. The Belfast woman says her goal is to inspire as many people as possible – rather than being a role model. “I think everybody has faults… I can’t be the perfect role model for anybody as I have my own faults. I’d love to inspire people in the things that I do do well and continue to try to inspire as many people as possible.


Gerard Stratton: is Company Director of Triplevision Productions, one of Northern Ireland’s most progressive television production companies. It has gained the reputation for producing high quality documentary and factual entertainment programmes for the UK television market. Gerard joined the company in 2006 and has have gone on to produce and direct over 120 hours of broadcast output for BBC, Channel 4, SKY 1, RTE, UTV, Channel 8 Israel and a wide range of high-profile corporate clients. Gerard is also co-director of I in 5.

Grace Fairley is an illustrator and animator, and is one half of Lemon Juice Studio – Belfast’s only female led illustration studio. She graduated from Ulster University in 2019 and since then has worked freelance and co-founded a community arts programme. Grace has often addressed her disability in her work. Recently she was the recipient of The Creating TIme Award and has a passion for everything weird, wonderful, and colourful.

Dermot Devlin is a disability rights activist from County Tyrone. In 2009 he founded My Way Access, an organisation focused on ensuring disabled people have equal and inclusive rights across accessibility, services, and health. In 2020, Dermot was awarded The Bravery Award from Amnesty International, for his work campaigning for disabled people and he has delivered talks for TEDx, Rare Disease Day and Disability Day – As well as appearing in The Disability Paradox, a BBC documentary on disability and mental health.

Chris Lynch is a disabled filmmaker and founder of Diverse Made Media, a London-based TV & Film Production company that is working to bridge the diversity gap in the industry. Chris has had a career spanning over 20 years and has worked with a number of international brands such as Allianz, Coca Cola, Unilever and has also appeared front of camera, presenting BBC’s ‘The Disability Paradox’. He left Belfast in 2022 after stepping down from his role as CEO of One in Five.

Jack Cochrane One in Five. Jack is a graduate from QUB in film studies. He joined 1 in 5 in 2022 and has had hands on involvement in shaping, shooting and directing some of the content on their slate. Jack is proud to have just finished his own film about gender and identity funded by NI Screen and 1in5 called They/Them.



June 1, 2023
9:30 am - 1:30 pm


Innovation Factory
028 9590 2500
View Organiser Website


Innovation Factory
Forthriver Business Park, 385 Springfield Road
Belfast, Belfast BT12 7DG United Kingdom
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028 9590 2500
View Venue Website

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