Guidelines for Reporting and Writing About People With Disabilities

Guidelines for Reporting and Writing About People With Disabilities, is a most helpful aid for writers in creating a "straightforward , positive view of people with disabilities." The Guidelines, offer suggestions or appropriate ways to describe people with disabilities and explains preferred terminology . The leaflet reflects input from over 100 national disability groups and represent the current consensus among those groups. Most of it consists of an outline of "preferred words that reflect a positive attitude in portraying disabilities." Portions of the Guidelines have been adopted into the Associated Press Stylebook. A section headed Portrayal Issues, makes these suggestions: Do not focus on a disability unless it is crucial to a story. Do not portray successful people with disabilities as superhuman. Empasize people not labels. Put people first, not their disabilities. Emphasize abilities not limitations. Avoid using euphemisms to describe disabilities. Show people with disabilities as active participants of society.