LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Lt. Gov. Brian Calley has signed legislation removing the terms “mental retardation” and “mentally retarded” from state laws.
The new laws reflect a recent recommendation from a mental health commission appointed by Gov. Rick Snyder. They strike outdated language from various statutes and replace them with terms such as “developmentally disabled” or “intellectually disabled.”
The mental health commission recommended the wording changes in December with the aim of reducing stigmas associated with mental illness and developmental disabilities.
Special Olympics Michigan has said Michigan was among just a handful of states to not have already passed such legislation.
Calley says the changes encourage “everybody else to do a check on the types of words that we’re using” and to be “as inclusive and respectful” as possible.