To each of us, to see characters who look like us on television, gives a sense of relatability, inclusion, and presence. It allows our inner imagination to place us in the stories we see. It adds a layer of visibility and a sense of validation. We need to feel we are a part of the ongoing human narrative of storytelling.
We need to be seen.
This year, prime time television is set to hit a record high with the number of characters with disabilities. During the 2018-2019 season, there will be eighteen characters with disabilities, who appear on a regular basis, on prime time network shows.
This information was released from a report released by GLAAD, a media advocacy organization. GLADD annually measures representation of minority groups on television. This year they analyzed eight hundred and fifty-seven characters that are expected to appear on scripted prime time shows. These prime time networks include ABC, CBS, NBC, CW, and FOX.
Some of the characters include a physician with autism, a teen with cerebral palsy, and multiple wheel chair users.
Even though the number of characters represented does not accurately reflect the real percentage of Americans with disabilities, it is a good start.
Photographer, media creator, painter, and father. Bringing people’s dream projects to fruition. With a deep love for film, music, coffee, and the arts.