The Italian company is the first luxury fashion label to sign with The Valuable 500, an organization committed to putting disability awareness on the corporate agenda.

By Emma Kahmann.

Over the last decade, the fashion world has expanded its conversation around inclusivity as consumers increasingly demand more diverse representation. Brands have begun to cast more racially diverse models in their campaigns and runway shows, while also including a greater range of body types, and more gender representation. Fashion houses have created scholarship opportunities with the hope of casting a wider (and fairer) net for talent, ultimately attracting shoppers who feel they are better represented by these high-end brands. The Prada Group is the first luxury fashion company to join The Valuable 500, an organization dedicated to putting disability on companies’ agendas.

The goal of the Valuable 500, founded by Caroline Casey and headquartered in Davos, Switzerland, is to get 500 corporations to commit to addressing people with disabilities by adding more inclusivity to their companies calendar. While Prada is exploring a range of options for the new inclusivity agreement, the company’s first commitment is to hire individuals with Down syndrome in their Italy retail locations.

The Prada Group’s initiative will apply to all of the company’s brands, including Prada, Miu Miu, Church’s, and Car Shoe. Under The Valuable 500 organization, The Prada Group promises to share the new adaptations publicly once they are formulated.

Though no other fashion houses have boarded The Valuable 500 yet, other brands have begun raising disability awareness. Last year, Gucci cast Ellie Goldstien for the Gucci Beauty campaign and Moschino made Aaron Philip the face of its Fall 2020 campaign.

By joining The Valuable 500 network, Prada shows another way for luxury fashion to actively support disability representation, which goes beyond showing people with disabilities in their campaigns, but integrating them throughout their companies.

Image credit: Prada