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Published: Saturday, 8/1/2009

Lucas County agency begins name change

A decades-old agency gets a new name in October, but the soon-to-be Lucas County Board of Developmental Disabilities has begun the transition, Superintendent John Trunk announced yesterday.

The board relabeled its Web site lucasdd.org.

We re the same organization. No change in services, just the name, said Lon Mitchell, spokesman for what has been the Lucas County Board of Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities.

Gov. Ted Strickland last month signed legislation to remove mental retardation from the state department s name and from the names of all 88 county boards.

The change was promoted by people with developmental disabilities and their advocates because variations of the term often are used in hurtful ways.

Very often, people aren t sensitive to its usage, Mr. Mitchell said. They may not want to hurt somebody s feelings, but they really are. It s more than being politically correct. It s a step toward improving the quality of life for people with developmental disabilities.

The Lucas County board will use up its old letterhead before phasing in printed material and policy manuals with the new name, Mr. Mitchell said.

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