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Virgin Atlantic, Lucky Generals, and PR agency Tin Man have teamed up to launch an updated gender identity policy removing the requirement for colleagues to wear "gendered" uniform options. I'm not entirely sure what's meant by this as women have been wearing pantsuits for at least 80 years before Marlene Deitrich made it glamorous, and men all over the world have been wearing skirts and tights since at least the time when the Egyptians could carve an image into stone. But ignoring that, these are skirt uniforms with hourglass-waisted jackets, and three-piece pant suits without the hourglass. Oh, I see how it's "gendered" now, no wait I still don't.
The earned and paid media campaign further champions the individuality of Virgin Atlantic’s people by enabling them to wear a uniform that expresses how they identify or present themselves.
So basically, people who work for the airline get to pick what uniform they're comfortable in, well that sounds nice! Great idea! I'd probably pick the three-piece pantsuit myself as I really like that color combination, and have always been a sucker for vests.
The campaign is brought to life through content featuring Drag Race sensation Michelle Visage, non-binary influencers, dancers, and Virgin Atlantic colleagues all modelling the uniform options
The ‘runway on a runway’ film created and shot by Lucky Generals was shot on location at Bedford Aerodrome and directed by Samuel Douek from CAMP productions. It merges movement, dance, innovative camera techniques and impressive set design and features Michelle Visage, LGBTQ+ rights activist Tanya Compas, cabaret, and burlesque star Tyreece Nye and transgender TV personality and model, Talulah Eve.
New York club kid and drag race personality Michelle Visage's hair steals the show already. But everyone else does their best to keep up with funky dance moves and catwalking.
The policy update also includes the introduction of optional pronoun badges, ticketing system amends to allow for passport holders with gender-neutral gender markers to use their gender codes and titles, and mandatory inclusivity training.
Oh, well that sounds like a great way to create more jobs, I suppose? Remember when we had proofers at ad agencies? I kind of wish we'd get them back.
The announcement is complemented by a new roll out of optional pronoun badges for its people and those travelling with the airline. Alongside updated ticketing systems to allow for passport holders with gender neutral gender markers to select ‘U’ or ‘X’ gender codes on their booking as well as the gender-neutral title ‘Mx’.
Hang on, how many countries have gender-neutral markers in passports by now? And will those passport holders get in trouble if they take a fancy vacation in Dubai? I'm asking too many questions now, aren't I?
The integrated campaign encompasses paid, earned, and owned channels and includes strategic media relations, an inclusive influencer programme and video content for earned and paid media.
The ‘runway on a runway’ was shot on location at Bedford Aerodrome and directed by Samuel Douek from CAMP productions. It merges movement, dance, innovative camera techniques and impressive set design and features Michelle Visage, LGBTQ+ rights activist Tanya Compas, cabaret, and burlesque star Tyreece Nye and transgender TV personality and model, Talulah Eve.
Launched as part of its ‘Be Yourself’ agenda, the airline has already unveiled a series of industry-leading inclusivity initiatives for its people to ensure they can truly be themselves at work and feel comfortable in their roles.. This latest addition follows a decision to remove mandatory makeup for female cabin crew back in 2019 and more recently lifting restrictions around visible tattoos for crew members.
"Visible tattoos", ah yes, these days people have them on their hands and faces. Back in the olden days you would never really know that the King of Denmark was inked up like sailor.
Michelle Visage commented: “As the mother of a non-binary child, and as an ally to the LGBTQ+ community, these efforts by Virgin Atlantic to further inclusivity for its people are extremely important and personal to me. People feel empowered when they are wearing what that best represents them, and this gender identity policy allows people to embrace who they are and bring their full selves to work.”
Laura Brander, Vice President, Communications at Virgin Atlantic commented: “Earlier this year we launched a new brand and advertising campaign with the end line “See the world differently”, drawing on our heritage of challenging the status quo.
“This policy change further illustrates how we see the world differently, championing the diverse range of individuals who work and travel with us. We’re delighted to release this integrated campaign with purpose at its heart into the world.”
Social Film Creds
Creative Agency: Lucky Generals
Director: Samuel Douek
DOP: Rick Joaquim
Production Company: CAMP
Production Company Executive Producer: Fran Woods
Editing House: Stitch
Editor: Samuel Marr
Postproduction: Time Based Arts / Lucky Productions
Colourist: Myles Bevan
Sound House: 750mph
Sound Engineer: Jake Ashwell
Music: Louder Than Words from Extreme Music
‘The Making Of’ Film creds
PR Agency: Tin Man
Production Company: O My!
Agency Lead: Jodie Woolfson
Head of Creative: Natalie Honan
Director: Brad Nagle
DOP: Cameron Vickers
Sound Operator: Alex Milson