Thursday, May 29, 2008

Patronizing Beijing Olympics guide pulled

The guide for Beijing Olympic volunteers in dealing with people with disabilities, Skills for Helping the Disabled, which had patronizing comments about disabled people, has been pulled from the official Beijing 2008 Web site, according to the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.

The Australian Paralympic Committee wrote to the International Paralympic Committee about the manual, which raised the issue with the Beijing Olympic Organizing committee (BOCOG).

The deputy head of the Australian Paralympic Committee, Jason Hellwig, told Radio Australia that although the manual's language is inappropriate, he doesn't believe it reflects attitudes among Chinese Games organizers.

"We were surprised because it's very out of step with the dealings that we've had with BOCOG, the experience that our athletes have had in China and Beijing, Hong Kong and Qingdao specifically over the past few years," he said.

Among the offensive statements in the guide was: "Disabled people can be unsocial, stubborn, controlling and defensive."