News article

Date: 05. May 2016

Not OK Cupid:
Dating Site Urged to Remove Offensive Question

Mencap, an organisation that helps and gives support and advice to individuals with learning disabilities, has slammed dating app OKCupid. The reason? Among the many hundreds of questions that the site poses to users in order to match them up with appropriate partners, one states, "Would the world be a better place if people with low IQs were not allowed to reproduce?". Mencap says that this statement is, "inappropriate, offensive and discriminatory."

Lawrence has started a petition asking OkCupid CEO Mike Maxim to remove the question immediately.

Ciara Lawrence is a campaigner for Mencap and is also someone who suffers from a learning disability. Upon discovering the question, she states that she was "horrified" at the idea that some people think the world would be much better if she didn’t have kids. She stated that as a married person who lives with a learning disability (and also thinking about having children), she found the question incredibly, "…inappropriate, offensive and discriminatory." She also said, "It should not matter who you are when you have children, just that you will love them and do everything you can to raise them in the right way."

A petition has already been started by Lawrence. The petition is directed at OKCupid CEO Mike Maxim, urging him to remove the question from the dating site immediately.

Lawrence was diagnosed with a learning disability at the age of ten. She says that from such an age she was always told, "You will never", "you won’t", "you can’t". Constant negative statements. She found it difficult to imagine that she would be able to achieve anything. "However," Lawrence goes on, "now I am married, have a great job working at Mencap and live an independent and happy life." She says that she's "very lucky" for the kind of support that is available to her. However, Lawrence does note that it is important for people with learning disabilities to have positive role models in their lives. They need to be encouraged to fulfil their dreams.

According to an OKCupid spokesperson: "Our question system is designed to help potential matches understand the interests and values of other users. Questions range from mundane to provocative and they specifically allow you to determine your potential compatibility with someone else and to avoid people whose viewpoints you strongly disagree with."


Source: Buzzfeed News