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Why and How to Communicate with Bias-Free, Inclusive Langu年龄

12.3分钟阅读

2021年8月18日

We all carry some sort of bias—a prejudice toward or unfair characterization of people based on identity factors like gender/性取向, 年龄, 种族/民族, 社会经济地位, 和残疾. We may not even be aware of our biases since they often form at an early 年龄 and develop over a lifetime of exposure to certain attitudes.

有偏见并不会让我们成为坏人, but we should try as best we can to acknowledge them and strive to be bias-free and 包容, particularly in our professional communications.

在当前的政治和社会气候下, organizations should reflect on how they communicate in their social media, 电子邮件, 备忘录, 和技术文件. 在哈里斯, we scrutinize closely the words and im年龄 we use, 理解 that even a small amount of bias, 然而无意, 可能大, 负面影响.

Avoiding biased langu年龄 starts with knowing what to look out for. Biased langu年龄 is communication considered prejudiced, offensive, harmful, or hurtful. 它包括单词, 短语, and expressions that belittle or dismiss groups because of the identity factors mentioned above, 等. It can also convey the superiority or inferiorly of specific groups. In short, the words you use can have questionable associations and implications for your audience.

作为一个专业的沟通者, you should actively use langu年龄 that includes people of all genders/性取向s, 年龄, 人种/种族, 社会经济状态, and disabilities in a way that makes no assumptions of the groups discussed.

By using bias-free, 包容性的语言 in your communications, you can:

  • Promote Your Organization’s Principles of Representation and Visibility. Your organization serves various communities with different needs, 目标, 身份, 和观点. 因此, your goal should be to represent these different voices and to provide visibility for these communities, 特别是在面向公众的文件中, 例如环境影响报告, 气候行动计划, 技术报告, 总体规划元素, 和主计划, to reach a larger audience without making others feel excluded.
  • Build Trust and Establish Relationships in Communities Where Your Organization Works. When organizations use biased langu年龄 in their communications, 他们的听众注意, and because they communicate in a way that offends or demeans certain groups of people, 这会损害他们的信誉. 然而, when organizations communicate in a way that reflects their principles regarding representation and visibility, they build trust and establish meaningful relationships with their audience and in the communities where they work.
  • Increase Your Organization’s Innovation and Success.1, 2 Studies show that organizations working in groups composed of many 身份, 观点, and experiences are more innovative and more successful than homogeneous organizations. 使用没有偏见, 包容性的语言 assists in gaining the support of a more diverse audience and 理解 and meeting the needs of the various communities your organization serves.

哈里斯的团队 put together several tips to help your organization use bias-free, 包容性的语言 in your professional documents and daily communications:

  • 注意你使用的词语和图像. We choose words and im年龄 due to underlying biases, and this affects how the entire communication is framed. 有意识的风格指南3 provides a clear example of how words and im年龄 convey a certain meaning: Think of the connotations tied to “noise” and “sound.” “Noise” is often framed as a negative word, while “sound” is not. Be conscious of how the words and im年龄 you use in communications frame a person, 情况, 或社区, and use langu年龄 sensitive and respectful to many 身份 and audiences.
  • Avoid Assumptions and Descriptors That Reinforce Stereotypes. 避免贬低他人, 情况, 或社区的细节或刻板印象, such as women as administrative assistants and men as 工程师s. Stay away from descriptors that suggest a statement is an exception to what the audience expects, like the sentence “Intelligent Latino business 老板s attended the public hearing,” which suggests that being both Latino and intelligent is an anomaly.
  • 在适当的时候具体说明. Avoid references that draw undue attention to particular backgrounds or 身份. 例如, in the sentence “Twelve City Councilmembers were led by gay City Council President Jane Doe,” Jane Doe’s 性取向 isn’t relevant to their leadership of the City Councilmembers and, 因此, 不需要被包括在内. 然而, 当特定引用有效时, learn the most appropriate terminology or use the term preferred by the person or group concerned.4
  • 使用语言以人为本. People-first langu年龄 avoids defining a person by, 例如, their disability and places the reference to a disability after the reference to the person, such as “a person with a disability” rather than “a disabled person.“然而, some groups prefer to be represented using identity characteristics, 所以一定要问他们更喜欢什么术语.
  • 使用平行语境和平等描述. Ensure all groups are fairly represented in your communications. This includes using parallel context, such as “Victoria Azarenka beat Serena Williams at the U.S. 开放” instead of “Victoria Azarenka beat African-American Serena Williams at the U.S. 开放,” in which Serena William’s race is stated but not Victoria Azarenka’s, 种族和这句话无关. 也, 使用显示公平的图片, such as men and women performing the same tasks instead of men working and women observing.
  • Consider Providing Support for Those Whose First Langu年龄 Is Not English. Offer translated versions of your communications for audiences you serve whose first langu年龄 is not English. This increases access to your organization’s documentation and, 因此, 理解, 透明度, and trust between the communities and your organization.
  • When In Doubt, Look It Up or Ask the Community What 的ir Preferred Terminology Is. When unsure of what terminology to use when referring to a specific community, look it up or respectfully ask that community for their preference. 例如, 哈里斯 created a Hawaiian terminology dictionary to use when writing technical documents for a client in Hawaiʻi to respect the client’s preferences and cultural herit年龄.
  • 愿意改变. You’ll make mistakes as you consciously implement bias-free, 包容性的语言, 但这是学习和成长的唯一途径. When you stumble, acknowledge your mistake and respectfully respond to the communities you serve. By doing this, you’ll show your organization’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion.

说这个,不要说那个

下面是一些有问题的例子, biased langu年龄 regarding gender/性取向, 年龄, 种族/民族, 社会经济地位, 和残疾. We have also included bias-free, 包容 alternatives and explanations.

性别和性取向

有问题的

替代

解释

chairman; chairwoman

chair; chairperson

Gender is not relevant to the professional title and is not needed.

fireman; firewoman

消防队员

he/she; he or she; (s)he; him/her; his/hers

they; them; their

选择 are 包容 of all genders and include those who may not identify as male or female.

同性恋

gay; lesbian; gay person

选择 are the more acceptable terms; “同性恋” is considered an outdated clinical term and offensive/derogatory.5

husband; wife

partner; spouse

Gender is not relevant to the relationship title and is not needed.

房东

老板

Gender is not relevant to the professional title and is not needed.

人小时

人小时

Gender is not relevant to the description of work and is not needed.

人造的

人造

人力资源

workers; workforce

policeman; policewoman

警察

Gender is not relevant to the professional title and is not needed.

性偏好

性取向

“Sexual preference” implies that attraction to the same sex is a choice. “Sexual orientation” is the more accurate term.6

变性人(名词)

变性人(形容词)的人

“Transgender” should be used as an adjective only because it is the preferred construction by the group described.7

女性工程师

工程师

Gender is not relevant to the professional title and is not needed.

年龄

有问题的

替代

解释

老年人

older adult; older person; person 65 years and older

的 problematic terms perpetuate the stereotype that older adults are less able (intellectually, 身体上的, or emotionally) than other 年龄 groups and that they are in a group separate from society.

老年人

老人

senior; senior citizen

种族/民族

“Race” refers to physical differences that groups consider socially significant.8

“Ethnicity” refers to shared cultural characteristics, 比如语言, 祖先, 实践, 和信仰.9

有问题的

替代

解释

culturally disadvant年龄d; culturally deprived

historically underrepresented group; people of color

的 problematic terms imply the dominant culture (i.e., 白人文化)优于其他文化, that other racial/ethnic groups lack having a culture of their own, and that “white” is the standard that all other cultures should be judged against.

少数民族

非白人

社会经济地位

有问题的

替代

解释

the homeless; homeless person; transient

人经历无家可归

的 problematic terms imply criminality and define the person only by their housing status. “人经历无家可归,” which is constructed as people-first langu年龄, instead identifies what the person is experiencing and not what they are.

the poor; poverty-stricken person; low-income person

person experiencing poverty; person living at or 下面 the poverty line

有问题的术语很广泛, 评判, and generalizing and define the person only by their 社会经济地位. 选择, which are constructed as people-first langu年龄, instead identify what the person is experiencing or has and not what they are.

富人

拥有物质财富的人

残疾

有问题的

替代

解释

(健康状况)的受害者

有[健康状况]的人

的 problematic terms are negative terms that imply restriction or are considered slurs that insult or belittle the person being described. 选择, which are constructed as people-first langu年龄, instead identify what the person is experiencing and not what they are.

成瘾者

有药物滥用障碍的人

盲人

盲人

handicapped; 身体上的 challenged

person with a disability; person who has a disability; person with a physical disability

mentally ill; crazy

精神病患者

normal people; healthy people

没有[健康状况]的人

special needs; mentally challenged; mentally retarded; retarded

智障人士

坐在轮椅上的人

wheelchair user; person who uses a wheelchair

额外的资源

Here are some additional resources you can reference as you work on using bias-free, 您组织的包容性语言:

If you have any questions, please reach out to 哈里斯’ Technical Editor 林赛Messner 下面.

1http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/how-diversity-makes-us-smarter/
2http://www.mckinsey.com/business-functions/organization/our-insights/why-diversity-matters
3http://consciousstyleguide.com/beyond-terminology-zooming-focus-bias/
4http://interactioninstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/Sum-Of-Us-Progressive-Style-Guide.pdf
5http://www.glaad.org/reference
6http://www.glaad.org/reference
7http://www.glaad.org/reference
8http://apastyle.apa.org/style-grammar-guidelines/bias-free-languAge/racial-ethnic-minorities
9http://apastyle.apa.org/style-grammar-guidelines/bias-free-languAge/racial-ethnic-minorities

作者

林赛Messner

林赛Messner

Technical Editor / 环境规划+合规


作者

林赛Messner

Source

哈里斯 & 的同事

类别

AEC行业
企业社会责任
多元化、公平与包容