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Respect Campaign

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The Respect Campaign asks people to pledge to stop using the word "retard(ed)" and other derogatory language as a starting point toward creating more accepting attitudes and communities for all people.


Respectful and inclusive language is essential to the movement for the dignity and humanity of people with intellectual disabilities. However, much of society does not recognize the hurtful, dehumanizing and exclusive effects of the word “retard(ed)”. Often unwittingly, the word is used to denote behavior that is clumsy, hapless and even hopeless. But whether intentional or not, the word conjures up a painful stereotype of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and it hurts, even if you don’t mean it that way.



WHEN? The official R-Word day of awareness is the first Wednesday in March, but people everywhere can help spread the word throughout their communities and schools by having pledge drives, youth rallies and promoting via social media.



Activation Ideas:


Have an assembly


Make a Respect video


Pledge Banner signing


Respect Week














Why Promote Respect in Your School:


  • Help your school and local community advocate against bullying and hurtful language
  • Raise awareness of the harmful, dehumanizing effects of the R-Word
  • Participate in the creation of an enviornment free of steretypes where differences are not only accepted, but celebrated
  • Give students of all abilities an opportunity to be leaders





Respect starts with you!  Take the lead and spread respect in your school and community with events, social media and more!


If you need assistance planning your Respect Campaign or resources, contact ltabada@soor.org



R-Word Pledge  

I pledge and support the elimination of the derogatory use of the r-word from everyday speech and promote the acceptance and inclusion of people with intellectual disabilities.

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