While we have certainly come a long way when it comes to reducing the stigma associated with mental and physical disabilities, it is safe to say that there is a lot more work to be done in eradicating it all together. At the time of the last check, there were 6.9 million people with disabilities making up the UK population- that is a significant figure. If we all took the time to gain a better understanding and educate ourselves on the difficulties that people with disabilities face, we should be better able to reduce the stigma they meet on a daily basis.

Educate yourself

One of the most important things anyone can do when it comes to battling disability stigmas is to simply take the time to find out more about mental and physical health problems. Education is the first step to solving problems in every aspect of our lives, so why not find out more about disabilities so that you can separate facts from stereotypes and myths.

Be supportive

Treating people with dignity and respect is so important when it comes to reducing the stigma of disabilities. Consider the way that you would want to be treated if you were in their shoes. If you have any co-workers, friends of family members who have mental or physical disabilities, always try to find wants to reach out and help them in whatever way possible, even if it is to help them with charging their mobility scooter batteries.

Check your attitude

It would be impossible to say that we have not witnessed in one way or another some form of judgemental behaviour at some point in our lives. Education should help to ditch any stereotypes and prejudices and work towards you seeing people are individuals rather than the labels that they are often pigeonholed under. Through seeing a person beyond their mental illness you will be able to establish a better understanding of their personality and personal attributes.

Spread positivity

Remaining positive when dealing with people with mental and physical disability is important as it will help to see people are more than their health conditions. Applauding positive contributions made by those who are disabled will help to remove the stigma of disabilities as it will better highlight their positive contributions to society.

Be careful with your words

The way that we speak and the language we use can have a significant impact of reducing the stigmas associated with disability. We tend to use derogatory language without thinking about it and this can not only be hurtful when directed at someone but can also slow progress when it comes to challenging the stereotypes that have been established by other people.

Be inclusive

It is illegal in many countries to discriminate against those who have mental health problems which means that it is illegal to not offer someone a job, healthcare or housing based on their disabilities. This ideology can be carried forward into your everyday life- make sure that you are always being as inclusive as possible when it comes to dealing with all individuals, whether they are different to you or not.

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