Are you intimidated by terminology around disability? Worried about saying the wrong thing so you just stay quiet?
Well here’s 3 easy ways to make sure you’re not going to say the wrong thing and make it easier for you to tackle the topic.
As long as you make sure to the words you are using are: Relevant, Positive and Factual then you can’t go wrong.
Let’s start with talking about someone’s physical disability, there’s lots of insensitive and offensive things people can say when talking to or about someone with a physical disability.
Start with a positive, no one’s disability should ever be treated as a burden, it’s usually part of that persons every day life so make your language positive. We should often begin with ‘additional’ as their disability is an addition to their life not a negative thing.
You need to make sure what you’re saying is factual, never use derogatory terms. The best way to say this is to state their type of disability this can usually be grouped into physical, mental or learning.
Next check what you’re saying is relevant, is the phrase you’re using relevant to the person. Their disability is usually a need, so make this the final part of your phrase.
So if you are talking to or about someone with a physical disability, the best way to describe their disability is as an additional physical need.