The National Diversity Awards, sponsored by Microsoft, showcases the people who have made outstanding commitments to enhancing equality, inclusivity and diversity in society. Since 2006 The Diversity Group has organised the event to promote and celebrate the importance of diversity - "the one true thing we have in common".
Jarvis quickly gathered the required number of nominations to be considered for the award of Entrepreneur of Excellence in the Disability category. Her work in setting up and building Blue Badge Style shows that she has a outstanding dedication to the idea of creating a more equal and inclusive society.
Principally Jarvis is concerned with the notion that being disabled should not be a barrier to people enjoying themselves. The current situation makes it too difficult for the less-physically-able and she works to help people around the issues that people have in accessing style. She believes that style and disability are not mutually exclusive. “Style is the overriding premise of the website and app," she says, "along with a positive outlook. Disability need not stop you from enjoying the good things in life!”
The Blue Badge Style app works as a” Michelin-like” star system for the less able. It identifies cool venues near your location and uses a bespoke three tick rating system to grade it out of 5 for each category: 1.Access, 2.Facilities and 3.Style, so that users know exactly what to expect from each venue. You can then easily see the best places near you, read a review, check the Blue Badge Style rating and get directions on how to get there.
The National Diversity Awards recognise contributions from people who look to eliminate discrimination on the grounds of disability, gender, sexual orientation, religion and race. Jarvis has been nominated for her work in this area. Her core ethos is of 'freedom shared' - an image of a truly diverse society.
Fiona Jarvis established the Blue Badge Style website in 2007 in an attempt to create a community of like-minded people for whom style and disability are not mutually exclusive. She first realised she might have multiple sclerosis after falling off her high heels in a bar once too often. She has become progressively disabled over a period of 20 years whilst she worked in the City selling multi million pound software systems for the like of SAP. However, Fiona has always refused to compromise on her own style, whether that’s eating in smart restaurants, wearing elegant clothes or going on glamorous holidays. Through all the challenges, Fiona has carried on and not compromised on style. She embodies the BBS Spirit! Just as Coco Chanel said: “Fashion fades; only style remains the same”.
About Blue Badge Style
The Blue Badge Style website and mobile app are currently building a community whose core ethos is 'freedom shared'. However, Blue Badge Style also offers a number of additional services:
Blue Badge Style Tick Rating
The unique BBS Tick Rating System is designed to encourage venues to provide Equality of Access to Goods & Services. We rate out of 5 for each category: 1.Access, 2.Facilities and 3.Style. The scores are then aggregated to a number of BBS Ticks from 0.5 to a maximum of 3. Our aim is for ‘as recommended by Blue Badge Style’ to become an aspirational goal for any item, organisation or establishment.
Whatever you wish to do, be it go to Paris, visit the Tate, stay at a boutique hotel, or check out the latest nightclub, BBS will arrange and advise on the best way to do this.
BBS campaigns highlight where the ‘equal provisions of goods and services are unreasonably deficient’. The intention is to act as an agent for change, altering venues’ mind-set toward accessibility. It needs to be treated as the ‘norm’, rather than something a venue is compelled to do by legislation.
We also campaign for the better design of disability products, which currently look like they are from the Marquis de Sade’s basement!
Pictorial Access Descriptions (PADs)
BBS offers PADs for all hospitality venues. They are social media ready descriptions of the facilities &/or obstacles within a venue. They look at comfort rather than compliance and are as cool as the venue’s website, allowing potential customers to make an informed choices about whether to visit.