How parents can help kids without disabilities become allies

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For Parents/Guardians

Ways you can help kids without disabilities become allies of people with disabilities

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Teach

kids that difference is valuable and part of being human.

Talk

about different types of disabilities and what we all have in common.

Discuss

with kids how everyone (classmates and friends) can work or play together and encourage those connections.

Share

the message that kids and youth with disabilities belong in your community, classroom, and workplace.

Help

kids avoid negative and ‘ableist’ language, like “confined to a wheelchair” or “suffers from a disability” that implies having a disability is bad, and instead use “uses a wheelchair” or “has a disability.”

Encourage

kids to ask questions about disability, including asking kids and adults with disabilities directly. Teach kids how to use respectful language and to seek permission before asking follow up questions.

Explain

that each individual chooses how to describe themselves and their disability. For example, some people use “autistic person,” while others use “person with autism.” The best way to understand how an individual wants to be described is to ask them.

Ask

kids about times they have felt different and reflect on those experiences.

Celebrate

differences!

Identify barriers

(like stairs, videos without captions or doors without access buttons) and talk to kids about how we can find solutions.

Actively

invite kids and youth with disabilities to join your social and community activities.

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