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Disability Culture Etiquette & Interaction Employment Services & Innovations Indiana Vocational Rehabilitation Services.

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Presentation on theme: "Disability Culture Etiquette & Interaction Employment Services & Innovations Indiana Vocational Rehabilitation Services."— Presentation transcript:

1 Disability Culture Etiquette & Interaction Employment Services & Innovations Indiana Vocational Rehabilitation Services

2 Disability Types  Sensory Disability  Physical Disability  Intellectual/Developmental Disability  Psychiatric Disability  Acquired Disability (TBI/SCI) Employment Services & Innovations Indiana Vocational Rehabilitation Services

3 Disability Etiquette  Smile and be friendly.  Use a normal tone of voice.  Talk to the person with the disability—NOT to his aide, coach, or sign language interpreter.  When talking with a person in a wheelchair, sit or kneel to be at eye level. Employment Services & Innovations Indiana Vocational Rehabilitation Services

4 Disability Etiquette, cont.  Do not refer to a person’s disability unless it is relevant.  Use “disability” rather than “handicap” to refer to a person’s disability.  When referring to a person’s disability, try to use “people first” language. Employment Services & Innovations Indiana Vocational Rehabilitation Services

5 Disability Etiquette, cont.  Avoid referring to people with disabilities as “the disabled,” “the blind,” “the epileptics,” “the retarded,” “a quadriplegic.”  Avoid negative or sensational descriptions of a person’s disability.  Don’t portray people with disabilities as overly courageous, brave, special, or superhuman. Employment Services & Innovations Indiana Vocational Rehabilitation Services

6 Disability Etiquette, cont.  Don’t use “normal” to describe people who don’t have disabilities.  Never say “wheelchair-bound” or “confined to a wheelchair.”  Never assume that a person with a communication disorder (speech impediment, hearing loss, motor impairment) also has a cognitive disability, such as mental retardation. Employment Services & Innovations Indiana Vocational Rehabilitation Services

7 Interacting with a Person Who Uses a Wheelchair  Do not push, lean on, or hold onto a person’s wheelchair unless the person asks you to. The wheelchair is part of his/her personal space.  Try to put yourself at eye level when talking with someone in a wheelchair. Sit or kneel in front of the person.  Rearrange furniture or objects to accommodate a wheelchair before the person arrives. Employment Services & Innovations Indiana Vocational Rehabilitation Services

8 Interacting with a Person Who Uses a Wheelchair, cont.  Offer to tell where accessible restrooms, telephones, and water fountains are located.  When giving directions to a person in a wheelchair, consider distance, weather conditions, and physical obstacles (curbs, stairs, steep hills, etc.)  Don’t pet or distract a service dog. The dog is responsible for its owner’s safety and is always working. It is not a pet. Employment Services & Innovations Indiana Vocational Rehabilitation Services

9 Interacting with a Person Who Has a Hearing Impairment  Let the person take the lead in establishing the communication mode, such as lip-reading, sign language, or writing notes.  Talk directly to the person, even when a sign language interpreter is present.  If the person lip-reads, face him or her directly, speak clearly and with a moderate pace. Continued… Employment Services & Innovations Indiana Vocational Rehabilitation Services

10 Interacting with a Person Who Has a Hearing Impairment, cont.  Do not position yourself in front of a window or harsh light, or the person who is deaf or hard of hearing will have difficulty seeing you.  With some people, it may help to simplify your sentences and use more facial expressions and body language. Employment Services & Innovations Indiana Vocational Rehabilitation Services

11 Interacting with a Person Who Has a Speech Impairment  Pay attention, be patient, and wait for the person to complete a word or thought. Do not finish it for the person.  Ask the person to repeat what is said if you do not understand. Tell the person what you heard and see if it is close to what he or she is saying. Continued… Employment Services & Innovations Indiana Vocational Rehabilitation Services

12 Interacting with a Person Who Has a Speech Impairment, cont.  Be prepared for various speech devices or techniques used to enhance or augment speech. Don’t be afraid to communicate with someone who uses an alphabet board, a device that uses pictures or symbols, or a computer with synthesized speech. Employment Services & Innovations Indiana Vocational Rehabilitation Services

13 Interacting with a Person Who Has a Visual Impairment  When greeting the person, identify yourself and introduce others who may be present.  Don’t leave the person without excusing yourself first.  When asked to guide someone with a sight disability, never push or pull the person. Allow him/her to take your arm, then walk slightly ahead. Point out doors, stairs, or curbs, as you approach them. Continued… Employment Services & Innovations Indiana Vocational Rehabilitation Services

14 Interacting with a Person Who Has a Visual Impairment, cont.  As you enter a room with the person, describe the layout and location of furniture, etc.  Be specific when describing the location of objects. (Ex., “There is a chair three feet from you at eleven o’clock.”)  Don’t pet or distract a guide dog. The dog is responsible for its owner’s safety and is always working. It is not a pet. Employment Services & Innovations Indiana Vocational Rehabilitation Services

15 Interacting with a Person Who Has a Cognitive Disability  Keep your communication simple. Rephrase comments or questions for better clarity.  Stay focused on the person as she/he responds to you.  Allow the person time to tell or show you what he or she wants. Employment Services & Innovations Indiana Vocational Rehabilitation Services

16 Natural Supports Websites  VCU Rehabilitation Training & Support  Job Accommodation Network  Griffin Hammis Employment Services & Innovations Indiana Vocational Rehabilitation Services


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