Words matter. They shape our perceptions. Words can make the difference between forging trust or creating distance. Language can also be used to indicate who is included and who is not. Our language must continually evolve with our understanding and acceptance of diverse groups of people. As a vital resource for news and information, as well as educational and cultural programming, GBH has an obligation to uphold the highest standard for inclusive language.
This booklet aims to guide everyone in the quest to communicate accurately and be culturally responsive to all, signaling to people that we honor their dignity.
The Guidelines contains chapters devoted to race, ethnicity and nationality; sexual orientation; gender identity and gender expression; gender inclusivity; disability; age and family status; substance use; and veteran and military status.
The language in this guide may not apply to every individual, therefore it is critical to take personal preferences of story subjects into account. Language use and terminology is constantly changing. This guide does not cover every situation so please refer to the links provided to other sources to get more information. This guide will be updated regularly.