The Language of Community Living

Our communications attempt to reflect values and accepted best practices with regard to language and terminology, including:

  • Using people first language – referring to the person first and the disability second (“people with disabilities” rather than “the disabled”); avoiding the use of labels and stigmatizing language;
  • Using plain language – limiting the use of jargon, acronyms, and highly technical, specialized or bureaucratic language.

See Spectrum’s new policy on Communication.

Here are some references on people first and plain language:

Out of intense complexities intense simplicities emerge. Broadly speaking, the short words are the best, and the old words when short are best of all.
Winston Churchill

When you wish to instruct, be brief; that men’s minds take in quickly what you say, learn its lesson, and retain it faithfully. Every word that is unnecessary only pours over the side of a brimming mind.


Credo for Support – People First Speakers