New info about ableism and you

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Kellis Amberlee
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New info about ableism and you

Post by Kellis Amberlee »

We've been doing a lot of moderation of ableist words and phrases. This is quite different than sexism, racism, and pretty much all other forms of bigotry because this community seems to be quite good at avoiding using slurs and negative stereotypes in all areas other than ableism. We've also noticed that there are repeat offenders who get moderated for ableism multiple times. In addition, some people seem to think that using an ableist slur is always acceptable if it is covered by a trigger warning.

We take ableism very seriously -- just as seriously as we take other forms of bigotry. Since this is an on-going problem in this community, we are taking the following steps:

1. We've already started marking trigger warnings that we had to add using phrasing such as "tw added by mod".

2. A trigger warning added by a moderator does not solve the problem. If you use an ableist term inappropriately, you will be required to change the post to remove it (or if your time window for editing is expired, you can tell us how to edit the post and we will do it for you). For the rare cases where it's appropriate to use an ableist slur (a direct quote from a third party or in a reclamatory way applied only to yourself), the words must be covered by a trigger warning.

3. Repeat offenders will be issued formal board warnings. Please note that multiple warnings can lead to temporary or permanent bans.

4. If you notice someone using ableist terms inappropriately, please report the post. We would like everyone to be involved in helping this community become a place where people with disabilities don't have to deal with ableist slurs and microaggressions.

We understand that ableism is a new thing to deal with for many FoCA posters. Being moderated for using an ableist slur is not a horrible thing: it just means you made a mistake (which everyone does from time to time). However, it is serious enough that you need to change the rule-breaking post and make an effort not to do it again.

Please review our master post on ableism: ... =25&t=8228 . You will note that the steps outlined above are already accounted for in that post. We've been somewhat lenient for the last couple months to allow the community to get used to the rules regarding ableism. That grace period is over. Using ableist terms will get you the same kind of response as using homophobic slurs or anti-trans stereotypes.
The difference between the truth and a lie is that both of them can hurt, but only one will take the time to heal you afterward.