Re: A few thoughts on language.

Hi JamieThis is an important issue, that we have been struggling with. The problem is that so many of the alternative terms are used to mean different things in different locations. For example LD means something else entirely in the US and Europe.

Cognitive impairment is being used in a limiting way in the US - see

I love the term neurodiversity. The problem is a lot of people do not know what it means.

All the best

Lisa Seeman

Athena ICT Accessibility Projects 
LinkedIn, Twitter

---- On Mon, 13 Jul 2015 13:28:01 +0300 Jamie Knight<> wrote ---- 

Hello All, 
Hope everyone is well. I was wondering if it would be worth discussing how we use language. 
I see lots of references to 'cognitive disability'. I'm not sure that's the term we should be using. 
I have several impairments due to my autistic traits. I also have a number of abilities due to the same. 
However It's the environment that limits my ability to do things and thus my 'disability' is environmental. 
To use a physical metaphor. If someone in unable to walk (an impairment) and uses assistive technology (a wheelchair) and the environment is inclusive (lifts, ramps etc) then they are not disabled. The impairment becomes as relevant as their eye colour. 
In most of the issue papers I have seen we break down challenges by impairment. So perhaps we could adopt the term cognitive impairment. 
Additionally, for some the term is neurodiversity. ND respects someone for being different but also part of normal variation, it rejects the medicalisation of a set of common traits or reactions. 
I think It's a subtle but important change in language. 
I have impairments for sure. But that does not mean I should be disabled by the them. 
What do you think? 
Jamie + Lion 
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Received on Monday, 13 July 2015 10:52:42 UTC