Resources on De-Stigmatizing Language
Language matters, and research shows that stigmatizing language contributes to barriers for people experiencing substance use disorder to access services. The following resources provide information about moving towards bias-free language and discuss the ongoing shifts in language related to substance use disorder.
JEAP Produced Resources
Asking Demographic Questions in Research
From the JEAP Initiative
This guide, compiled by the JEAP Initiative, shares best practices for asking demographic questions in an inclusive way.
From the JEAP Initiative
View our previous newsletters on this page.
A Guide to Bias-Free Language
From the American Psychological Association
General guidelines for writing about people without bias across a range of topics and specific guidelines that address individual characteristics.
From the Recovery Research Institute
A dictionary related to substance use disorder designed to destigmatize and create a unified language.
Words Matter: Language and Stigma Reduction
From the Peer Recovery Center of Excellence
A webinar designed to aid participants in identifying the words we use and how they affect individuals with substance use disorder.
How Language Choice Can Reduce Stigma
From the Substance Use and Mental Health Services Administration
Understanding the impact of substance use disorder stigma and tips for avoiding stigmatized language.
Health Equity Style Guide
From the Center for Disease Control and Prevention
Principles and preferred terms for non-stigmatizing, bias-free language for the COVID-19 response.
Reframing Transition Age Foster Youth
From the Frame Works Institute
A communication toolkit designed to collectively build the understanding and support we need to change the narrative around transition age foster youth.
Choosing Appropriate Language to Reduce Stigma
From the Nature Portfolio
The words we use to describe mental illnesses and substance use disorders (addiction to alcohol and other legal and illegal drugs) can impact the likelihood that people will seek help and the quality of the help they receive.
The Addiction Psychologist Podcast
From the Society for Addiction Psychology.
Language surrounding clinical care in addiction is unlike any other area of medicine in that it often uses terms that are pejorative and lack specificity. In the episode Dr. John Kelly - Stigma in Addiction and Courses of Recovery, Dr. John Kelly talks about why we need to “stop talking dirty” in addiction research and treatment.
Underground Scholars Language Guide
From the Berkeley Underground Scholars
A guide for communicating about people involved in the Carceral System (Legal System)
Recommendations for Ethical Reporting on Addiction
Reporting on Addiction
A guide to help journalists stop perpetuating stigma through their reporting and start providing well-rounded coverage of addiction and recovery.