By canfasdblog on Jul 12, 2023 07:00 am

Since 2017, we have been publishing an FASD Common Messages Guide, a resource focused on respectful ways of writing and talking about FASD. Each spring, we review the guide and update it with new research and conversations that emerge in the FASD community. Over the last several years, individuals with lived experience have been increasingly involved in providing their feedback on the topics we cover and language we use to describe issues related to FASD.

This year, we’ve made a few changes, including:

  • A new preamble to increase transparency about our process for developing and updating the guide
  • Changes to the language we use to refer to the “costs” associated with FASD
  • A new section on lived experience
  • Major updates regarding gender-inclusive language
  • New sections on neurodiversity and interdependence

An important point to consider when using the guide is that a “one-size-fits-all” approach to language and messaging does not always apply. The suggestions we provide in the guide are intended to be inclusive and respectful for all individuals with FASD and their families. However, recognizing the diversity and uniqueness of each person with FASD, we always recommend consulting at an individual level to ensure that language choices are reflective and respectful of each person’s experience.

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FASD Media Guide [zip archive] – This tool kit is intended for health care professionals, service providers, journalists, or anyone who might speak to the media about FASD. Use this resource to help guide you on how to speak to the media about FASD, or how to run your own media campaign on FASD/alcohol and pregnancy, ensuring that the language you use is informed, inclusive, and non-stigmatizing.