Learn how to be aware of and use inclusive language in your writing.
Inclusive language is free of prejudice, stereotyping and discriminatory views and reduces stigma. It supports people’s health and well-being and ensures they feel safe, seen and understood.
In using inclusive language, it may be helpful to ask:
- Am I staying open and curious and encouraging others to do the same?
- Does the individual or group have preferred terms?
- Does the language reflect the diversity of the intended audience?
- Is reference to a person’s gender, culture, ethnicity, age, etc. relevant?
Consider changing gender-specific pronouns in written communication to gender-neutral pronouns, including but not limited to changing:
- he/she to they
- his/hers to theirs
- him/her to them
- sister/brother to sibling
- husband/wife to spouse
- mother/father to parent
- maternal/maternity to parental
Refer to the following resources to ensure you’re using current inclusive language:
- Government of B.C. website on inclusive language and terms.
- Respectful language in relation to sexual health, substance use, sexually transmitted and blood borne infections and intersecting sources of stigma.
- People-centred language for people who use substances.
- Inclusive language when talking about trans identity, gender, sexual orientation and health and wellness.
- Inclusive language when talking about COVID-19
Consider having your messaging translated so it is accessible to people from diverse backgrounds. Diversity services can advise on the best languages into which you should translate your messages. To have content translated, visit translation services.