Wavemaker has today launched WM Enable, a global initiative to promote awareness and understanding of disability and neurodiversity, to support affected employees, managers and teams, and ensure the agency is best placed to welcome more people with disabilities into its network.
Created for everyone at Wavemaker who is impacted by a disability (visible or non-visible), has neurological impairments or an underlying medical condition, WM Enable launches on 3rd December 2019 to coincide with International Day of Persons with Disabilities. An event at Wavemaker’s headquarters at London’s Sea Containers House will see speakers from the RNIB, the Premier League, TFL and Bec Development share their stories about living and working with disabilities and impairments and the agency will also take part in #PurpleLightUp
, which will see Sea Containers turn purple as part of the global movement designed to draw attention to the economic empowerment of disabled people.
Beyond the launch, the agency will introduce a range of practical changes: at the start of next year Wavemaker will be introducing Ability Allies into the business and introduce a handbook containing policies, procedures and advice for employees and managers affected by disability, and will be running training in co-ordination with disability charities and organisations. WPP has also signed up to the Valuable 500
committing to bring the disability conversation to board level and taking positive action within WPP agencies.
Sarah Conway, Wavemaker UK precision lead and the driving force behind the launch of Wavemaker Enable, said: “Research by the disability charity Scope shows that almost half (49%) of disabled people worry about making employers aware of their impairment or condition, while 48% are unaware of their rights as a disabled employee. I want to make sure that we are actively challenging perceptions and attitudes and building understanding of disability and neurodiversity in order to welcome a more representative pool of talent into the agency and the industry.”
James Edgar, global head of talent at Wavemaker, added: “We have a commitment to build a culture that nurtures and encourages every one of our employees and potential employees to bring their whole self to work. The realm of disability has a stigma that we are looking to break. We have run several projects, but it is time now that we develop a more cohesive way of approaching this. We are committed to raising our awareness, breaking down biases and myths and providing the support through allies and training that will positively influence our behaviour as an agency. I am excited about the potential of WM Enable to bring this to life for us and our Wavemakers.”