To celebrate World Down Syndrome Day (Sunday 21 March 2021) CoorDown launches their global awareness campaign “The Hiring Chain”. Their message to employers all over the world is that hiring a person with Down syndrome not only changes the life of the person concerned, but can trigger a virtuous circle of new opportunities for everyone.
Sting, the award-winning artist, performs the original song “The Hiring Chain”, which is the focus of the campaign video. The punchy, joyful lyrics come to life on screen and bear witness to the “virtuous” chain of inclusion in the workplace. In the first scene, a young woman named Simone is at work at the bakery, showing customers her skills. One of these customers is a lawyer who is impressed and decides in turn to hire a young man and give him a chance. From there, a chain reaction ensues: the young men and women featured in the video and song show that the more people with Down syndrome are seen at work, the more they are recognised as valuable employees. Challenging low expectations and prejudices, thus creating opportunities for new hires. On World Down Syndrome Day 2021, CoorDown takes up the challenge of the pandemic and the social crisis to affirm that job inclusion is not only a right to be guaranteed now more than ever for every person, but it brings benefits in the workplace and in society at large.
Employers inspired by our film should visit www.hiringchain.org (created by Adoratorio). They will find the contact details for organisations around the world that can provide information, support and encouragement to get people with Down syndrome into their workplace. There is also in-depth information on employment and answers to frequently asked questions about creating an inclusive workplace.
Why Work Matters. Being more independent, contributing to society, having your own income, learning new skills, meeting new people, and feeling valued. People with Down syndrome want to work for the same reasons as anyone else. But most people with Down syndrome face barriers and prejudices, lack of opportunities, low expectations, and stereotypical attitudes. Debunking misconceptions about their potential and the benefits of an inclusive workplace are the stories and experiences of companies, employers, and employees. Every person with Down syndrome can work according to their abilities. The goal is to find a role that fits each individual so they can do their job successfully. When given the right opportunity, people with Down syndrome can achieve great things and have a positive impact on colleagues, customer satisfaction, culture, and motivation throughout the company. Diversity strengthens all workplaces. A virtuous cycle that spreads into the rest of society.
“The Hiring Chain” campaign – available on CoorDown’s YouTube channel was created in partnership with the New York-based creative agency SMALL with the invaluable support of Indiana Production. The original song, performed by Sting, was composed by Stabbiolo Music.
This year’s global campaign was again supported by the Down’s Syndrome Association (UK) and Down Syndrome Australia with the patronage of DSi – Down Syndrome International.
The campaign has been supported by Fondazione Cariplo and LinkedIn whose Italian office partnered with CoorDown over the past 12 months.
The campaign’s official hashtags are #HiringChain #WorldDownSyndromeDay #WDSD21.
Antonella Falugiani, President of CoorDown Onlus: «With the campaign “The Hiring Chain” we want to invite everyone – companies, citizens, organizations – to give more job opportunities and to learn more about the benefits of inclusion. Work, for people with Down syndrome, is as important as it is for everyone. It is about ensuring a fundamental right that is also a human need, and is the same for every individual. Work is an important stepping-stone for growth, for becoming adults, for the realisation of one’s own life, for living independently and having the opportunities that all working people have. Just as it is important to study, so is the passage into the world of work, because it allows us to recognise the value of people and to have new social relationships, the economic base that work provides helps build independence and emotional relationships. Ensuring equal rights and dignity in the workplace to all people who have Down syndrome means giving them the opportunity to build their future».
Luca Lorenzini and Luca Pannese, Executive Creative Directors, SMALL New York: «We have been working with CoorDown since 2012 and each time the insights that the association offers us are so deep and fertile that the campaigns practically write themselves. This year, thanks to Indiana, we were able to work with internationally renowned director Rich Lee. And, as if that weren’t enough, Sting performed the song that accompanies the film. We grew up listening to Sting and The Police, and we’ll just let you imagine the excitement we felt when we heard his voice performing the song we wrote for CoorDown for the first time. We really hope that his contribution can make the campaign more visible and can help give more and more job opportunities to people with Down syndrome.”
Giovanni Fosti, President Fondazione Cariplo: “Work allows to unleash and express one’s potential and abilities: being a priori excluded from such an opportunity that should be granted to all is painful and unfair. The current times we are living in make inclusion of people with disabilities in the labour market even harder than before. Nonetheless, it is precisely in difficult times like these that we need stronger, more cohesive and more inclusive communities. For this purpose, Fondazione Cariplo has recently launched a new edition of the call for proposals “Abili al Lavoro” [Able to Work] and is also supporting, in collaboration with CoorDown, a campaign that aims to raise awareness regarding the importance of job inclusion.”