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EFDS creates disability sport guide for journalists

By Matthew Campelli    31 Aug 2016
Horne said that positive news would encourage disabled people to get involved in sport

The English Federation of Disability Sport (EFDS) is publishing a guide for journalists and providers of sport news to improve their output when covering disability sport.

Within the body’s Media Research Report – which benchmarked the media’s current portrayal of disabled people in sport – were a number of key messages for reporters based on survey responses of disabled and non-disabled participants.

Recommendations include: a focus on achievement rather that disability; avoiding overly used terms such as “inspirational”; explaining classification systems; and the use of high quality images.

The guide also gives tips on tailoring content, story type, style and placement, language and media formats.

The report, which was put together by ComRes, found that while there had been an improvement in media coverage since the London 2012 Paralympics, there needs to be a “long-term effort” to improve media coverage between Paralympic years.

Sport England, the Sports Journalists’ Association (SJA) and the British Paralympic Association (BPA) are supporting the guide.

“The news we consume can affect everyone’s perceptions of themselves as people and, for the talented few in sport, as athletes,” said EFDS chief executive Barry Horne. “This means that it is particularly important that coverage is positive if it is going to encourage disabled people to access opportunities and take part.

“That is why we all have an obligation to improve our reporting and articles about disabled people in sport.”

EFDS  disability sport  equality  Paralympics 
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