Watch the Best Short Movie of the Year: #NotSpecialNeeds

#NotSpecialNeeds - new short out in time for World Down Syndrome Day gets it right
The new short gets it right

#NotSpecialNeeds just came out in time for World Down Syndrome Day and it is my favorite short of 2017. Watch it:


Their website has more articles and I’m really honored to be there as well, with my post on Special Needs/Disability. I was not expecting that, and to be associated with such a stellar project brings me deep joy.


Main Points

Main points from the #NotSpecialNeeds campaign are:

  • People with Down syndrome have human needs; not special
  • Accommodation for disability isn’t a “special need”
  • The words “special needs” segregates, excludes and stigmatizes; it’s not by and for people with disabilities (who largely consider “special needs” to be patronizing and condescending)


  • We shouldn’t just replace “special needs” with another euphemism like “additional needs,” “challenged,” or “differently-abled.”

    They go on to say,

    But what words should we use instead?

    Well, it depends on the context.

    How about just the person’s name? It is not always necessary or appropriate to refer to someone by a label.

    But in the situations where it is helpful, we should “say the word,” and call disabilities or the relevant disability what it is – “Disability,” “Down syndrome,” etc.

I couldn’t put it better.

Watch and share the video and site, please: this is a message that I’ve been waiting a long time for.

Meriah Nichols is teacher and artist who lives in a yurt off the grid. She is deaf, has 3 kids (one with Down syndrome) and a lot of chickens. She writes about travel, disability, and getting dishes done. She likes her tea Earl Grey and hot.


#deaf mom, teacher & #disability activist, living in a yurt #offthegrid. 3 kids (1 with #downsyndrome), a camera and a lot of chickens. Never a dull moment
*Hysterically laughing* - 16 hours ago
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  • Smiling from ear to ear….I thought this was just outstanding because it flips the script on conventional thinking on DS. Thx for sharing.

  • Human needs. YES! a smile, friendship…it is so true and beautiful. I wish that could be shown as a short before movies at the theaters and at schools for all ages. And glad it is a PSA

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