ENJOY Click here to begin Good Day! This is your 30-Second Training: ACCESS SERIES
How should you refer to a customer with a disability when talking to a colleague? By their name, or if I don’t know their name by using “People First” language. As “the learning disabled kid who wants to be a _______” (fill in the blank: “CNA”, “Over-the-Road-Trucker”, etc…) As “that nice wheelchair guy who always brings in muffins”.
Wheelchair guy? Really? If he’s nice enough to bring in muffins, the least you can do is find a better way to describe him. Hint: If you asked him to describe himself, do you think he would call himself “Muffin Guy”? Probably not, and even if he did, that is his prerogative – not yours! This isn’t the correct answer to the question. Please try again… Wrong…
“The learning disabled kid…” is probably not how his mother or friends would describe him. To them, he is more than his disability, and they probably don’t consider that to be his most defining characteristic. You can do better… Please try again! That’s not right…
Positive language empowers. When writing or speaking about people with disabilities, it is important to put the person first. Group designations such as "the blind," "the retarded“ or "the disabled" are inappropriate because they do not reflect the individuality, equality or dignity of people with disabilities. Further, words like "normal person" imply that the person with a disability isn't normal, whereas "person without a disability" is descriptive but not negative. Individuals are sometimes concerned that they will say the wrong thing, so they say nothing at all—thus further segregating people with disabilities. Check out this chart to see examples ofchart positive and negative phrases. CORRECT! Click here to end show Click here to return to answer links