Our Approach to Language
T1International acknowledges that language is a powerful tool. The words we choose and use in our written communication have deep meaning and can also mean different things to different people. Within our organisation, we have put into place an internal system to annually review and make changes to organisational language and word choices. We are committed to remaining true to our values and work towards equity, including our goals of providing resources in various languages and ensuring that our English language choices reflect our efforts to continuously to improve, learn, and reflect all people and identities found within the diabetes community.
As a global organization we strive to best represent the beauty and nuance of the diabetes community, and we recognize that there is no “one term fits all”. Rather, we aim in our writing and communications (especially when referring to communities as a whole) to use terms that are “one term fits most”. We know it is impossible for one word or term to represent everyone because communities are complex and diverse. We do our best to recognize and honour that the way that people identify is varied and nuanced. While it is helpful to agree on terms where possible, we also want to refer to individuals and communities the way that they wish to be referred to and understood.
Language changes. Sometimes it evolves gradually over time, and other times the change is more swift and intense. We acknowledge that we are unable to keep up with every change, but we are always learning and finding ways to implement those learnings. We also recognize that different countries may experience language and terminology very differently, and that our audience is global and far-reaching. Therefore, you will likely see T1I’s language shift based on the communities we are working alongside to support mirroring the audience’s preferences. Deciding which terms are most reflective and representative of each community, which ones are the most appropriate or not, considering which ones are best understood by those who do not speak English as a first language, and keeping our boldness at the forefront are all part of our thought process.
Some conversations about language can be difficult, but we are committed having those conversations with empathy and compassion. We will aim to ensure that conversations and questions are considered within the context of how the diabetes community interacts in a multitude of social, economic, and political systems.
We will continue to analyse and challenge our use of language in hopes of making sure that T1International remains a truly inclusive and healing space for everyone. Please reach out to us at [email protected] if you have any suggestions for us as it relates to language choice (or anything else!).