Card 1: Quote — “Language is very powerful. Language does not describe reality. Language creates the reality it describes.” – Desmond Tutu

“Language is very powerful. Language does not describe reality. Language creates the reality it describes.”

– Desmond Tutu

Card 2: “A Down Syndrome baby” compared with “A baby with Down Syndrome” — Rather than defining people by their disability, people-first language conveys respect by emphasising the fact that people with disabilities are first and foremost that — people.

A Down Syndrome baby

“A baby with Down Syndrome”

Rather than defining people by their disability, people-first language conveys respect by emphasising the fact that people with disabilities are first and foremost that — people.

Card 3: “A Downs baby”, “A Downs”, “A Downsie”, “A baby with Downs” compared with “A baby with Down Syndrome”, “A baby with Down’s Syndrome” — Down Syndrome is a medical condition named after the physician who first defined it, John Langdon Down.

A Downs baby” “A Downs
A Downsie” “A baby with Downs

“A baby with Down Syndrome”
“A baby with Down’s Syndrome”

Down Syndrome is a medical condition named after the physician who first defined it, John Langdon Down.

Card 4: “With a typical baby…” — When referring to the majority, it is more appropriate to use the word typical than the word normal. Differentiating a child who is typical with a child who has Down Syndrome by using the word ‘normal’ can cause offence.

“With a typical baby…”

When referring to the majority, it is more appropriate to use the word typical than the word normal. Differentiating a child who is typical with a child who has Down Syndrome by using the word ‘normal’ can cause offence.

Card 5: “They are all” compared with “We are all” — All people with Down Syndrome are individuals, not a ‘they’ or an ‘other’. As humans, with or without Down Syndrome, we are all unique. It’s about the human, the person, the individual.

They are all

“We are all”

All people with Down Syndrome are individuals, not a ‘they’ or an ‘other’. As humans, with or without Down Syndrome, we are all unique. It’s about the human, the person, the individual.

Card 6: “Suffers from Down Syndrome” compared with “Has Down Syndrome” — Down Syndrome is not an illness or an injury that someone suffers from. It is a syndrome that approximately 1 in 1000 of us are born with.

Suffers from Down Syndrome

“Has Down Syndrome”

Down Syndrome is not an illness or an injury that someone suffers from. It is a syndrome that approximately 1 in 1000 of us are born with.

Card 7: Down Syndrome? “But he’s got nice hair though”, “But she’s got beautiful eyes though” compared with “He’s got nice hair”, “She’s got beautiful eyes” — A compliment with ‘but’ or ‘though’ is not a compliment.

Down Syndrome?

But he’s got nice hair though
But she’s got beautiful eyes though

“He’s got nice hair”
“She’s got beautiful eyes”

A compliment with ‘but’ or ‘though’ is not a compliment.

Card 8: “There is a high risk your baby has Down Syndrome” compared with “There is a high chance your baby has Down Syndrome” — “The language used during scans can have a powerful emotional impact on the parents.” “It can influence how they respond to the news, and any decisions they make regarding how to move forward.” — Dr Judith Johnson

There is a high risk your baby has Down Syndrome

“There is a high chance your baby has Down Syndrome”

“The language used during scans can have a powerful emotional impact on the parents.” “It can influence how they respond to the news, and any decisions they make regarding how to move forward.” — Dr Judith Johnson

Card 9: “Breaking bad news” compared with “Sharing unexpected news” — When unexpected news is shared, the choice of language will influence how a person hears, understands and processes it. The first moment Down Syndrome is mentioned will often stay with a parent for the rest of their lives, so it needs to be non-judgmental, accurate and fairly balanced.

Breaking bad news

“Sharing unexpected news”

When unexpected news is shared, the choice of language will influence how a person hears, understands and processes it. The first moment Down Syndrome is mentioned will often stay with a parent for the rest of their lives, so it needs to be non-judgmental, accurate and fairly balanced.

Card 10: What is Down Syndrome? — Down Syndrome is a chromosomal condition that occurs when the egg and sperm meet. Each cell contains 23 pairs of chromosomes, in Down Syndrome, chromosome number 21 sticks on the very first divide at the very, very beginning, it then divides in threes. It is not a disease or an illness, it is a condition or syndrome.

What is Down Syndrome?

Down Syndrome is a chromosomal condition that occurs when the egg and sperm meet. Each cell contains 23 pairs of chromosomes, in Down Syndrome, chromosome number 21 sticks on the very first divide at the very, very beginning, it then divides in threes. It is not a disease or an illness, it is a condition or syndrome.

Card 11: Why Down Syndrome? — Down Syndrome was first described by an English physician John Langdon Down in 1862. Hence the name Down Syndrome or Down’s Syndrome. There are 3 types of Down Syndrome, the most common is also known as Trisomy 21 (3 copies of chromosome 21).

Why Down Syndrome?

Down Syndrome was first described by an English physician John Langdon Down in 1862. Hence the name Down Syndrome or Down’s Syndrome. There are 3 types of Down Syndrome, the most common is also known as Trisomy 21 (3 copies of chromosome 21).