Mencap, the learning disability charity, are calling on the dating website OkCupid to remove a deeply offensive question and apologise to people with a learning disability for the offence caused.
OkCupid asks users as part of its screening process “would the world be a better place if people with a low IQs were not allowed to reproduce”. This question is offensive towards people with a learning disability and others. A learning disability is a reduced intellectual ability and difficulty with everyday activities – for example household tasks, socialising or managing money – which affects someone for their whole life. Many people with a learning disability can and want to lead a life like anyone else including having a family, but face barriers including negative public attitudes.
Amy Clarke, a Mencap spokesperson, who has a learning disability, said:
“I am very upset that OkCupid could ask a question about whether people with a learning disability should be allowed to have children. This is not ok. It is shocking and offensive. As by asking the question, they are making it seem like it is ok to say yes which it is not. If they had asked the same question about people of different races or sexuality there would be outrage and it should be the same for people with a learning disability.
“I am not sure if I want to have children, but I do want to find someone to settle down with. I am single and I know dating can be difficult, so…