For Families

A family of three in an outdoor setting. The mother, who is Caucasian, has her arms casually wrapped around her school-aged daughter, who is holding a fidget. The father, a Black American man, is bending toward their daughter with a smile on his face.

This information is presented as a jumping off point and is not intended to address every aspect of disability in America. Disabled Americans are extremely diverse and it would be impossible for one website could capture every experience.

After you learn some of the basics here, consider listening to some of the many other people with disabilities worldwide who have chosen to educate and advocate.

Family-friendly information.

Whether you have a disability or you want to be a better ally, you should know the basics about ableism. This section will give you the same kinds of information found on the Professionals page – just in smaller chunks that are easier to use.


Disability Etiquette

We can break disability etiquette into two parts: “the things we do” and “the things we say.”

Things We Do: To remember things we can do so people with disabilities are treated with respect and equity, think: “AID.” AID stands for:

Things We Say: The language people with disabilities use to describe themselves has changed over time. To remember the types of language we need to change or avoid, think: “FOE.” FOE stands for:

We’ve already looked at some of the ways that people with disabilities are very diverse, and it’s important to remember that language preferences aren’t universal. Because of that, you should also know about person-first and identity-first language and reclaimed words.