Words Matter

“The Easterseals UCP Nonprofit Edition of The Inclusive Language Handbook: A Guide to Better Communication & Transformational Leadership” published last month! The new edition of this incredibly important reference guide includes a foreword by Luanne Welch, the CEO of Easterseals UCP.

In a world where words can either build bridges or create barriers, The Inclusive Language by Jackie Ferguson, is a timely and essential resource for people seeking to foster inclusivity and understanding.

The rewards for using inclusive language are felt at the individual level and across an organization, according to Ferguson. “You’ll clear the path for everyone to do their best work. As a matter of fact, inclusive language will strengthen and transform the whole culture for the better.”

With a focus on the nonprofit sector, the Easterseals UCP Edition goes beyond mere etiquette, delving into the profound impact of language on relationships and organizational culture. Ferguson addresses the discomfort, exclusion, and misunderstandings that can arise from poorly chosen words or phrases, providing practical strategies to navigate these challenges.

“Words matter. They can heal or hurt, encourage or discourage and connect or divide the very people at the heart of any organization. Choosing the right words can build better relationships, better companies and better communities,” says Luanne Welch, CEO of Easterseals UCP.

Recognizing that inclusive language is not just a matter of correctness, but an embodiment of respect and empathy, the book offers guidance on discussing personal identity and diverse aspects of human experience. By employing thoughtful and inclusive language, readers can foster stronger relationships, nurture productive teamwork, and create a culture of inclusivity that attracts and retains talented individuals.

The Inclusive Language Handbook goes beyond individual transformation, offering insights on how to drive positive culture change within communities and organizations. Ferguson presents best practices for consistently using respectful language that values every individual, creating environments where everyone feels supported, valued, and motivated. Whether you are a nonprofit leader, a team manager, or simply an individual committed to fostering a more inclusive society, The Inclusive Language Handbook provides practical tools and actionable steps for leveraging the power of words to effect meaningful change.

By embracing the principles outlined in this handbook, readers will embark on a journey toward better organizations, communities, families and societies, where inclusive language serves as a cornerstone for building bridges, dismantling barriers, and cultivating transformative leadership.

The Easterseals UCP Nonprofit Edition of The Inclusive Language Handbook: A Guide to Better Communication & Transformational Leadership is available to purchase here. A portion of all proceeds will be donated to Easterseals UCP to support our mission of providing exceptional disability, behavioral health and addiction treatment services.

Watch the video here.