Written by Joe Jackson on Jun 17, 2022. Posted in General Interest

Clare Baines revealed as BFI Disability Equality Lead

The BFI has announced that Clare Baines will act as their new Disability Equality Lead. This newly-created role is designed to further the BFI’s ambitions to promote disability and equality internally at the BFI as well the screen industries more broadly. Baines will be responsible for driving the BFI’s strategic aims forward. Reporting to the BFI’s Head of Inclusion Melanie Hoyes, Baines will become a key member of the organisation’s Inclusion Team.


“I became blind at the age of 15 and, rather ironically, that is when my passion for film started,” explains Baines. “I quickly began to realise the importance of storytelling and how vital representation is to belonging when I couldn’t find myself represented in UK film. I am proud to now be part of the BFI where I’m excited to build on the success of existing projects such as Busting the Bias and Press Reset, as well as working with the BFI’s Disability Screen Advisory Group and colleagues across the organisation to seed real change, empower disabled voices, advocate for accessibility and build meaningful relationships and allyships.”



“We are delighted to welcome Clare to the team to lead our vital work with the disabled community, spanning audiences, the screen industry’s workforce as well as the disabled creatives producing film and television,” adds Hoyes.


Baines has a degree in Biomedical Engineering and will join from Zebra Technologies, where she was an Inclusion Leader. Her responsibilities included: identifying and delivering activity to empower disabled talent; and forging the necessary partnerships to incorporate positive diversity, equity, and inclusion practices. She also has focused on how digital solutions and technology can better support disabled people, thereby developing specialisms in how inclusive design can support powerful storytelling.


"I am thrilled to welcome Clare as the BFI's first Disability Equality Lead,” says Andrew Miller MBE, Chair of the BFI Disability Screen Advisory Group. “Her appointment represents an important moment for inclusion in film following the success of Coda and Troy Kotsur at the BAFTAs and Academy awards. Her role emerges from the pioneering work of the BFI's Disability Screen Advisory Group and the world's first film focused Representation & Visible Difference Panel. I feel confident Clare's role will take disability inclusion in film to the next level and I can't wait to work with her."



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