79% of Pennsylvanians surveyed said they believe society thinks of people with disabilities with discomfort and awkwardness.
People can contribute to stigma even when they don’t realize it. Increasing dialogue about stigma is one helpful way to change people’s perceptions and create healthier conversations. This is the goal of our anti-stigma work.
In the past, our Health Committee for People with Disabilities (HCPD) hit the streets to participate in Pennsylvania Development Disabilities Council‘s anti-stigma campaign. They posted “What are you thinking?” thought bubbles to challenge assumptions that people sometimes make about people with disabilities. This started the Stick it to Stigma project.
To take the pledge against stigma, hear people’s stories, and take the stigma quiz, visit the Stigma Project website.
Stick it to Stigma
Stick it to Stigma is a project done by (HCPD) to change the narrative regarding perceptions of people with disabilities. A cross-disabilities group (physical, behavioral, sensory, developmental, and cross), the HCPD members are determined to tell our stories and to positively impact the stories told about us to be accurate and honest.
On a daily basis, people with disabilities are impacted by stigma both in comments made directly to them and negative, limited perceptions held about them. When applying for a job, they might be told, “I didn’t know you people worked?!”
When waiting for the bus, they could hear, “Why can’t they just stay home and get out of our way!”
When they attend a community gathering, worship, or a sporting event people might tell them, “I could never do what you do. You showing up is just such an inspiration!”
The Stick it to Stigma Project works to debunk these misconceptions through the stories, experiences, education, and advocacy of ourselves, our families, and allies.