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  1. #1
    jiaruchan is offline Member
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    Default Disabled people vs. People with disabilities

    I want to know if these two phrases have the same meaning.

    I personally think 'people with disabilities' sounds more respectful. Am I right?

  2. #2
    Ouisch's Avatar
    Ouisch is offline Moderator
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    Default Re: Disabled people vs. People with disabilities

    It depends upon the context. In the US, both "disabled" and "people with disabilities" are acceptable/common usage, but whevenever possible it's preferable to mention the person first. That is, it's more appropriate to say "person with cerebral palsy" or "person with autism" or just a general "person with disabilities." The emphasis should be on the person, not the particular disability.

  3. #3
    aziz abd's Avatar
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    Default Re: Disabled people vs. People with disabilities

    Google the two expressions and you'll find :
    26 400 000 Disabled people vs 13 700 000 people with disabilities.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Disabled people vs. People with disabilities

    Quote Originally Posted by aziz abd View Post
    Google the two expressions and you'll find :
    26 400 000 Disabled people vs 13 700 000 people with disabilities.
    My Google search gives a slight preference in the other direction - 6m:8m. I don't know why the Google searches are so different in different places, but I guess you can't read much into those statistics.

  5. #5
    aziz abd's Avatar
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    Default Re: Disabled people vs. People with disabilities

    here is mine.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails peop dis.jpg   dis peop.jpg  

  6. #6
    tedtmc is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: Disabled people vs. People with disabilities

    'disabled' is most widely used - 119,000,000

  7. #7
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: Disabled people vs. People with disabilities

    Quote Originally Posted by jiaruchan View Post
    I want to know if these two phrases have the same meaning.

    I personally think 'people with disabilities' sounds more respectful. Am I right?
    The theory behind saying person with + noun is to emphasise that they are people first, but I don't think that there are many people who use the phrase 'disabled people' disrespectfully, so I can't see that there's much in the distinction, but will happily use whatever form someone prefers.

  8. #8
    emsr2d2's Avatar
    emsr2d2 is offline Moderator
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    Default Re: Disabled people vs. People with disabilities

    Quote Originally Posted by jiaruchan View Post
    I want to know if these two phrases have the same meaning.

    I personally think 'people with disabilities' sounds more respectful. Am I right?
    I think your two examples are pretty much equal. However, remember that in these "politically correct" times, you will find some people who think that any mention of the words "disabled" or "disabilities" is offensive, because of their negative connotations.

    If you go back a few decades, you would have heard the word "crippled" used extensively. This was then changed to "handicapped" but that then went out of favour and was replaced with "disabled". Now, you will hear "differently abled" and "physically challenged" used, especially in official documents (government manifestoes, council leaflets etc).

  9. #9
    jiaruchan is offline Member
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    Smile Re: Disabled people vs. People with disabilities

    Quote Originally Posted by emsr2d2 View Post
    I think your two examples are pretty much equal. However, remember that in these "politically correct" times, you will find some people who think that any mention of the words "disabled" or "disabilities" is offensive, because of their negative connotations.

    If you go back a few decades, you would have heard the word "crippled" used extensively. This was then changed to "handicapped" but that then went out of favour and was replaced with "disabled". Now, you will hear "differently abled" and "physically challenged" used, especially in official documents (government manifestoes, council leaflets etc).
    Thank you for the interesting explanation. Just like the word blacks has given way to African Americans or in your part of the world African Britons, right?

  10. #10
    emsr2d2's Avatar
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    Default Re: Disabled people vs. People with disabilities

    Quote Originally Posted by jiaruchan View Post
    Thank you for the interesting explanation. Just like the word blacks has given way to African Americans or in your part of the world African Britons, right?
    In America, you're right. I've never heard the phrase "African Britons". That seems to be specifically used for "African American". In ethnicity classification in the UK, the phrase "Black British" is actually still used, and is then sub-divided into Caribbean, African and Other.

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