The Social Security Administration wants to start using the term “intellectual disability/mental retardation” in lieu of “mental retardation,” following a similar switch at other state and federal agencies across the country.
In a notice posted last month in the Federal Register, the Social Security Administration indicated that it wants to make the language change amid a series of updates to the agency’s eligibility criteria for those with mental disorders.
“The term ‘mental retardation’ has taken on negative connotations over the years, is offensive to many persons and results in misunderstandings about the nature of the disorder and the persons who have it. The term ‘intellectual disability’ is now widely used internationally and is gradually replacing ‘mental retardation’ in the United States,” the notice indicates as reason for making the change. Read more about it.
William Wombacher, your Central Illinois Social Security disability attorney