This week marked a major milestone for our client, The Valuable 500.
“It’s no longer good enough for companies to say ‘disability doesn’t fit with our brand’ or ‘it’s a good idea to explore next year’. Businesses cannot be truly inclusive if disability is continuously ignored on leadership agendas”. Those were the words of Caroline Casey on the main stage at the World Economic Forum in Davos as she launched The Valuable 500 in 2019.
Caroline founded The Valuable 500 – an ambitious campaign to get 500 of the world’s largest companies to put disability inclusion on their leadership board agendas.
Today, The Valuable 500 announced that it had reached its milestone of securing commitments to tackling disability inclusion in business from 500 global CEOs and their companies worldwide. This makes it the world’s biggest CEO collective for disability inclusion.
These are not just any companies – they represent a combined revenue of over $8 trillion and over 20 million employees across 36 countries. The companies include the likes of Apple, The Coca-Cola Company, Deloitte, EY, Google, Microsoft, P&G, Prada, Sony, Twitter, Unilever, Virgin Media, Verizon and Vodafone. The membership includes 37 of the FTSE 100 companies, 46 of the Fortune 500 and 28 of the Nikkei.
This global business leadership community will now work to increase representation, become accountable for employment, and each sign a commitment for disability inclusion, what started as a campaign, is now a system change community for disability inclusion.
This comes as new research from The Valuable 500 and Tortoise Media reveals that there are no executives or senior managers who have disclosed a disability in company reporting by the FTSE 100, while only 12% report on the total number of their employees who are disclosed as disabled.
Ahead of Global Accessibility Awareness Day on the 20th May, the research reinforces that while disability inclusion is now on the business agenda, it still has a long way to go before true inclusion is achieved.
Seven Hills is proud to have been the long-term global communications partner for The Valuable 500 since the movement was started. Over that time, our team have travelled around the world to promote its work at major global forums from One Young World in Bogotá through to the World Economic Forum in Davos.
To mark this latest news announcement, there has been widespread global and broadcast coverage with highlights including BBC Breakfast, BBC Radio 4 Today, BBC 5Live and BBC World. The announcement also featured in The Guardian and BBC Online.
Stay tuned as this is only just the start for The Valuable 500 – there will be more to come soon!