Michigan has officially removed the term "retard(ed)" from state laws after Lt. Governor Brian Calley signed the bipartisan "R-Word" package of bills at Hill Auditorium in Lansing on Friday, March 28. Calley is authorized to sign legislation into law when the governor is out-of-state. Gov. Rick Snyder spoke at Forbes Magazine's "Reinventing America" conference in Chicago on Thursday, March 27 and returned to Michigan on Friday, March 28.
Lt. Governor Cally chairs the Mental Health and Wellness Commission, which released a report earlier this year recommending removal of the "R-Word" from state law in order to reduce the stigma associated with mental illness.
Prior to today, the "R-Word" was used 15 times in a variety of Michigan laws dealing with everything from mental health institutions to educational facilities and criminal activity. It will now be replaced with the term "developmental disability".
About Aaron Mills: Aaron Mills is the Public Relations and Social Media Coordinator at Special Olympics Michigan