Kicking out ‘kicking off’: a debate on respectful terminology
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Kicking out ‘kicking off’: a debate on respectful terminology

Vanessa Moir Clinical nurse specialist, Additional Support Team, Devon Partnership NHS Trust, Exeter
Tony Alexander Deputy operations manager, Premier Living, Devon Partnership NHS Trust

Is the language used today to describe people with a learning disability any less discriminatory than the terminology used in the days of ‘idiocy’, ‘mental retardation’ and ‘backward’ children? Vanessa Moir and Tony Alexander investigate

Working alongside people who have a learning disability, we have become increasingly aware of individuals’ views on the disparaging language and labels used in learning disability services. Devon People First, a group that supports people with learning difficulties in speaking up about things important to them, is working with us on a project about the effect of disrespectful terminology. The project attempts to raise awareness among professionals of the experiences of members of People First and their belief that such terminology has caused stigma and discrimination, which is in direct conflict with the aim of developing a meaningful and valued relationship.

Learning Disability Practice. 11, 10, 34-37. doi: 10.7748/ldp2008.

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