Inclusive Language Putting the Person First

first_imgInstead of: He’s wheelchair bound. He has a cognitive disability. She receives special ed services. He has a disability. She has autism. He’s handicapped. People jumpingImagine that you have a disability.  You also think of yourself as an artist, a brother, a pizza lover, and a table tennis champion.  Your disability does not define who you are.  Unfortunately, labels are often placed on people with disabilities and they can carry negative connotations.  Saying that someone is “handicapped” immediately lumps them into a vague category that suggests huge limitations. At Easter Seals Crossroads, we encourage People First Language.  Here are some examples: He uses a wheelchair.center_img She has a brain injury. Acceptable Term: She’s autistic. She’s brain damaged. He’s mentally retarded. She’s a special ed kid. As you can see, People First Language puts emphasis on the person you are talking about, not their disability.  This promotes respectful language to use when addressing people who happen to have disabilities.For more information and examples, visit Disability is Natural.Share this…TwitterFacebookPinterestLinkedInEmailPrint RelatedIt All Starts With a Dream: Spotlight on Laura MedcalfJuly 23, 2014In “Easter Seals Crossroads”Travel Series: Flying with Southwest AirlinesNovember 24, 2010In “Services”2015 marks key year for workers accommodationsOctober 28, 2015In “Communication”last_img read more