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- Only refer to a person’s disability if it is relevant to the context. Be aware that some people prefer “identity-first” terminology, while others prefer “person-first” language. Identity-first: a blind man, an autistic woman. Person-first: Martha, who is blind, credits her guide dog with saving her from harm.
- Avoid “differently abled.”
- When needing to specify those without disabilities, preferred terminology includes “nondisabled” or “people without disabilities,” rather than “able-bodied.”
- deaf / Deaf: Lowercase to refer to the audiological status of people with total or significant hearing loss: deaf, hard of hearing. Uppercase when referring to the culture and community of deaf people: Deaf education, the cultural Deaf community.
- See also Disability Language Style Guide (National Center on Disability and Journalism)