Sunday, February 02, 2014

'The elderly' is now wrong

Town Hall chiefs have banned staff from using the term ‘the elderly’ and suggested ‘older people’ as an alternative.

According to Respect, a 31-page booklet handed out to 5,000 employees at Denbighshire County Council in North Wales, the word elderly is an ‘unacceptable’ phrase.

Similarly, an office is not manned but staffed, dinner ladies should be referred to as catering staff, workmen are workers, headmaster is head teacher, chairman is chairperson and a child or youngster is a younger person.

The booklet, produced in Welsh and English, told staff: ‘We should not make assumptions based on someone's age.  'Being older in the UK carries views of being worn out and of little use, it is also used as a term of abuse.

It added: 'The terms love, dear, pet may be considered offensive by some people, particularly women and should not be used.


The terms love, dear, pet etc ('honey' or 'hun' in Southern USA)  have come under attack before.  It shows how mean-minded people are who want to ban affectionate language.  I think it's great when people address one-another that way.

There is a really funny variant in parts of the English Midlands.  Women there address one another as "m'dook" (My duck).


stinky said...

As in, "M'Dook gave me the bill!"

/I know, I know, stick with the day job.

Anonymous said...

Where does that leave the term 'old fart'?

Anonymous said...

Funny how people never seem to consider they are going to be elderly or "old farts" one day when they demean the "senior citizens" around them, unless they really expect to die prematurely, which I doubt they do in most cases.

Anonymous said...

How about the terms "youth challenged" or "chronos impaired"?

Anonymous said...

'Gerasco-phobia' = fear of growing old or aging.
'Geronto-phobia' = fear of growing old or fear or hatred of the elderly.
Avoiding the term "elderly" maybe related to the above phobia/s