These words and expressions are currently preferred and reflect a positive attitude. Some language is "trendy" and meanings may vary depending on context or locale.
* person with a disability * disabled * hearing impaired * deaf * vision impaired * non disabled * developmentally disabled * mentally retarded * mobility disability * wheelchair-user or uses a wheelchair * person with cerebral palsy * person with paraplegia * blind * low vision * psychologically/emotionally disabledAgain, the ideal is to incorporate these words into our language in a way that expresses the dignity of the person.
We are often not aware of the biases or negative attitudes expressed in our language. Eliminating the bad words is as important as using the good words. These words and expressions have strong negative, derogatory connotations. Avoid using them and discourage use by others as much as possible:
handicapped cerebral-palsied crazy
insane cripple crip
deaf mute defective deaf and dumb
deformed gimp invalid
maimed paralytic lame
arthritic epileptic poor unfortunate
spastic spaz retard
afflicted victim withered
stricken wheelchair-bound confined to a wheelchair
Don't say. . . "A large bank in Southern California modified its building for its handicapped employees and customers. Subsequently, the bank initiated an on-the-job managerial training program which included afflicted college seniors. Participants included those stricken with various conditions."
But instead say . . . "A large bank in Southern California modified its building for its employees and customers with disabilities. Subsequently, the bank initiated an on-the-job managerial training program which included college seniors with disabilities. Participants included individuals who had either cerebral palsy, psychological/emotional disability, or a hearing impairment."
Not all people with disabilities agree on which language or terminology is preferred like any other large, yet identifiable group of people, individuals will vary as to how they refer to themselves and how they refer to them. The suggestions given above will apply to most people and be correct in most situations.