Salvatore Ferragamo Joins “The Hiring Chain” | A Step Towards Inclusivity



Salvatore Ferragamo is leading the path towards inclusivity in the Fashion World, by joining “The Hiring Chain”. The Fashion House was Italy’s first company to hire a person with Down syndrome through the campaign.


To receive the Luxiders newsletter, sign up here.

Salvatore Ferragamo became this week the first Italian Fashion Company to join “The Hiring Chain”, a campaign launched by CoorDown, an association that supports people with Down syndrome based in Italy. The campaign was set in motion on March 21st, the World Down syndrome Day; and calls on employers and workplaces to be more inclusive by hiring people with Down syndrome and other disabilities.  

Award-winning artist Sting lend his voice to the global awareness campaign that calls for job inclusion, and fights with the misconceptions about the capacities of people with Down syndrome to work. The video have received more than 5 million views, and over 900 companies have reached out to CoorDown to learn more about the campaign.


“We decided to join ‘The Hiring Chain’ campaign with great enthusiasm because we believe that it’s a priority to make the workplace more and more enriching and, on this journey, diversity is a fundamental value,” said Salvatore Ferragamo chief executive officer Micaela le Divelec Lemmi. 


According to the United Nations, in developing countries 80% to 90% of people with disabilities in working age are unemployed; and while the numbers are lower in the industrialized countries, it is still worrisome: 50% to 70%. The pandemic hitting worldwide last year, made things only more complicated, as historically people with disabilities are among first groups to be laid off. In the United States only, a study made by the National Organization on Disability showed that nearly 1 million people with disabilities lost their jobs between the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic and July 2020.  Across the ocean, things are no better: in the UK, the employment rates for people with learning disabilities fell to 5.6% in the period between 2019-2020. 

Inclusivity, specially in the Fashion Industry, has a long way to go; but hopefully companies will continue looking for ways to redeem a historically unequal and un-inclusive bubble. As we said before, over 900 companies have reached out to The Hiring Chain website, in which they can find information and support for the job placement of people with Down syndrome. We, as the president of CoorDown Antonella Falugiani, expect that:


“We hope that in Italy more companies will follow Salvatore Ferragamo’s positive example and decide to give an opportunity to other adults affected by Down syndrome and with intellectual disabilities. Now more than ever, inclusivity in the workplace is not only a right that needs to be guaranteed to each individual, but also brings benefits to the work environment and to society.”  


   +  Words: Leila Salinas, Luxiders Magazine 

Journalist | Berlin-based 

Connect with her on LinkedIn or Instagram (@leisalinas)