If person-centered language seems like semantics or political correctness, consider the results of a randomized Harvard study.
Clinicians exposed to the term substance abuser made “systematically different judgments” than clinicians exposed to the term having a substance use disorder; the former group was more likely to attribute blame and punitive action rather than treatment for the individual in question. Learn about Kelly and Westerhoff’s research.
The SAY IT Program toolkit provides respectful and positive person-centered language.
- Mental health
- Different abilities
- Substance use disorder
- Incarceration and justice-involvement
- Immigration status