Best Buddies
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table of contentsMay 2002

Dear Friend,

At Best Buddies, we use "people first" language. People first language reminds us all that a person is more than a disability. Thus, we say we work to enhance the lives of persons who have mental retardation or people with mental retardation.

Since working for Best Buddies, I have often wished there were no need to describe the population we serve. Too many parents and teachers and family members and persons with disabilities themselves have been offended or hurt by the label of mental retardation.

Now, the Arc of the United States has voted to stop using the term mental retardation. Other groups, including Best Buddies, are considering how to change their mission statements to reflect the work we do without being offensive. We will keep you informed about any changes Best Buddies makes.

The one thing that won't change is our commitment to building more inclusive communities - communities inclusive of all people, of all ability levels. At e-Buddies, each of us is building that new community, one e-mail at a time.

Lisa Derx
e-Buddies Director

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