People who contact Changing Faces tell us that there are very few positive role models for people with disfigurements on television. Current depictions of disfigurement in the media create a distorted, uninformed and negative view of disfigurement. This can influence how people are perceived and result in prejudice and discrimination.
These views are backed up a major research study from Cardiff University’s School of Journalism on TV Portrayals of Disfigurement and Audience Impact. It showed that TV rarely featured people with disfigurements in everyday roles and portrayals of disfigurement on TV tended to be based on stereotypes and assumptions.
Some examples of the portrayals of people with disfigurements on television include
Changing Faces believes that television and the media can play a big role in changing attitudes and breaking down prejudice around disfigurement.
Changing Faces wants to increase the visibility of people with disfigurements in everyday and public roles on television.
To do this, broadcasters need to commit to
Cardiff’s research confirmed that people with and without disfigurements wanted to see wider, everyday representations of people with disfigurement and felt that TV could play an important educational role.
Would you like to see more people with disfigurements in everyday and public roles on television?
Do you think that current portrayals of people with disfigurements accurately reflect your life (or a friend, family member’s life) or are the storylines often hackneyed and unimaginative showing little understanding of your life?
Do you find the language used by presenters, newsreaders, narrators to describe disfigurement offensive?
Are you tired of the documentaries which encourage people to assume that everyone with a disfigurement is constantly seeking a medical solution to their ‘problem’.
Please share your thoughts by emailing us or call 0345 450 0275.