Respect: What’s Your Role?

  • Always ask the person’s permission before you touch him/her. For example, if you are assisting a person to stand up from a seated position, ask, “May I help you?” Besides gaining permission to physically touch him/her, you may find that he/she is able to complete the action without any physical help from you.
  • Avoid talking to others about things that could be embarrassing or personal for a person. If information must be shared, do it in a private, respectful manner.
  • Don’t talk about someone you support in their presence; talk to them and encourage community members to do the same.
  • When accompanying someone to a medical appointment, encourage them to speak for him/herself. If the medical staff directs questions to you, defer to the person you support whenever possible.
  • Use every day language. Avoid jargon.