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Due to the lapse in government funding, only websites supporting excepted functions will be updated unless otherwise funded. As a result, the information on this website may not be up to date and the agency will not be able to respond to inquiries until appropriations are enacted.

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For friends and family

Girl helping a girl with a walker.

If you know someone with an illness or disability, do you find yourself a little confused, worried, or even scared? Need help figuring out how to act? You might ask yourself how you would want to be treated — or just come straight out and ask them what they’d like.

Thinking about the other person’s needs can help. For example, a person who is blind can only hear your voice, so don’t use your hands to express yourself. A person in a wheelchair may feel uncomfortable looking up at you, so pull up a chair or squat down. If you meet someone new who has an illness or disability, greet them just like any new person you meet. And if you have a friend who goes to the hospital, call or visit to show how much you care.

Whether you have a family member or friend or are meeting someone new with an illness or disability, this section of is for you.


Content last reviewed February 16, 2011
Page last updated October 31, 2013