Rolling Without Limits

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How To Greet A Person With Disability
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How To Greet A Person With Disability

When people with disabilities get into a meet and greet, I have noticed that a lot of people without disabilities tend to drawback because they sometimes get confused on how to greet us, someone people might even stretch their hands towards us for a handshake but when they pull their hands towards us and we slowly pull ours, they fear we had no strength in them, they pull back and say "Nice to meet you!" Although not everyone with a disability can pull their hands for a handshake, there are many who can, even if it doesn’t look that way at first glance. Not everyone likes handshakes, so it might be more comfortable to try a soft pat on the arm or a friendly wave. If you do want to shake someone’s hand but worry about hurting them, simply ask if it’s OK. 

If you meet a person with disabilities during a meet and greet, after the greetings, start a meaningful conversation, you can talk about the weather, news, families, pets, hobbies — anything you think of at the moment, but make sure you aren't talking about the thing that could hurt their feelings. As with most conversations, there’s a good chance you’ll stumble upon a common interest before long.

"Those of us with disabilities enjoy the same things as our able-bodied peers, and we will gladly chat with them during a meet and greet but it is important for able-bodied people to think about what they are going to say before saying them, I think it is important not to ask about my disability. I would only explain that to my doctor or voluntarily if I wish to," Vivian Johnson, a disability rights advocate said. 

An encounter with nearly anyone can be made brighter by smiling. Smiles are a universal language, so put up a smile, exchange greetings and start a conversation. 

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