Words matter: a call for humanizing and respectful language to describe people who experience incarceration.

Details

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State: Public
Version: Final published version
Serval ID
serval:BIB_0EC2C51C634F
Type
Article: article from journal or magazin.
Collection
Publications
Institution
Title
Words matter: a call for humanizing and respectful language to describe people who experience incarceration.
Journal
BMC international health and human rights
Author(s)
Tran N.T., Baggio S., Dawson A., O'Moore É., Williams B., Bedell P., Simon O., Scholten W., Getaz L., Wolff H.
ISSN
1472-698X (Electronic)
ISSN-L
1472-698X
Publication state
Published
Issued date
16/11/2018
Peer-reviewed
Oui
Volume
18
Number
1
Pages
41
Language
english
Notes
Publication types: Journal Article
Publication Status: epublish
Abstract
Words matter when describing people involved in the criminal justice system because language can have a significant impact upon health, wellbeing, and access to health information and services. However, terminology used in policies, programs, and research publications is often derogatory, stigmatizing, and dehumanizing.
In response, health experts from Europe, the United States, and Australia recommend that healthcare professionals, researchers, and policy makers working with people in detention follow key principles that foster constructive and humanizing language. These principles include: engage people and respect their preferences; use stigma-free and accurate language; prioritize individuals over their characteristics; and cultivate self-awareness. The article offers examples of problematic terms to be avoided because they do not convey respect for incarcerated people and propose preferred wording which requires contextualization to local language, culture, and environment.
The use of respectful and appropriate language is a cornerstone of reducing harm and suffering when working with people involved in the criminal justice system; the use of stigmatizing and dehumanizing language must therefore come to an end.
Keywords
Australia, Europe, Human Rights, Humans, Prisoners/psychology, Prisons, Respect, Social Stigma, Terminology as Topic, United States, Access, Discrimination, Harm reduction, Health in prisons, Human rights, Incarceration, Stigma, Terminology
Pubmed
Web of science
Open Access
Yes
Create date
03/12/2018 18:30
Last modification date
20/08/2019 13:35
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