The Cabinet Office Disability Unit has today named Boots HR Director, Ben Horner, its Disability and Access Ambassador for the retail sector.
In this voluntary role, Ben will be responsible for leading the way among retail business leaders to drive improvements to the accessibility and quality of services and facilities for disabled people, both as consumers and as employees.
Ben will be one of the 20 Disability and Access Ambassadors representing a range of private sector and other industries, who will also work together as a group to galvanise and encourage accessibility.
The Disability and Access Ambassadors are appointed by the Minister for Disabled People, Chloe Smith MP.
At Boots and No7 Beauty Company, Ben has been responsible for introducing several initiatives to support disabled team members, including new workplace adjustment processes and support passports, and he championed the company’s 2021 Health and Beauty Sector Partnership with Purple Tuesday.
In 2022, Boots also became the first retailer in the UK to introduce the Recite Me accessibility toolbar on its website, boots.com, allowing customers to create a customisable and inclusive shopping experience. Boots has also championed the Hidden Disabilities Sunflower Scheme and the Alzheimer’s Society’s Dementia Friends programme supporting customers with non-visible disabilities.
Ben commented: “I am very proud to have been appointed as Disability and Access Ambassador for the retail sector – a role that I personally feel very passionately about. The retail sector has been making great progress in improving accessibility both for its customers and in supporting more inclusivity among the workforce. I feel honoured to have been asked to play a wider role to improve awareness and support continued progress for people with disabilities.”