We capitalise the word Deaf when referring to Deaf people whose first language is BSL and/ or whose identity is strongly associated with Deaf culture and community.
We refer to a disabled person, to disabled people or to the disabled community. We use identity-first language in line with the social model and UK disability rights movement, rather than person-first, USA-preferred person/ people with disabilities. When we want to give examples of different kinds of disability, we use the terms physical or sensory […]
We refer to gender identity, rather than sex. These terms should not be used interchangeably: gender identity and sex mean something different and may or may not correlate. Gender identity is more inclusive of trans identities.
We use the acronym LGBTQ+ rather than longer (eg. LGBTQIA+) or shorter (eg. LGBT) acronyms. When we want to break down those letters into their constituent parts, we use the terms lesbian, gay, bi, trans, queer, questioning and ace. We prefer bi, trans and ace to bisexual, transgender and asexual because these abbreviations are generally […]
We refer to an LGBTQ+ disabled person, to LGBTQ+ disabled people or to the LGBTQ+ disabled community. The word order does not usually change: we do not say disabled LGBTQ+ people, unless the situation especially calls for that nuance.
We refer to people as non-disabled, rather than able-bodied or abled. In recent years, non-disabled has become the preferred term because it feels more neutral: able-bodied and abled imply that people are disabled only because of their body or impairment—when in reality, people are often disabled by external barriers (for eg. the built environment or […]
We refer to sexual orientation, rather than sexuality or sexual preference. Sexuality is broad and non-specific, while sexual preference feels outdated and implies that it involves an element of an choice.
We use the term wheelchair-user(s) rather than wheelchair-bound, confined to a wheelchair or in a wheelchair.