ASAN Vancouver: Protesting Autism Speaks #boycottAutismSpeaks

Disability Community Letter to CMS re: Behavioral Health Services and Olmstead | Autistic Self Advocacy Network

hybridglitch asked
I've been trying to figure out how to get in touch with the Central Ohio chapter of ASAN with no luck. Any ideas?

Unfortunately, the current status of the Central Ohio chapter is effectively defunct.

However we would love to have someone re-establish it! If you are interested, please email chapters@autisticadvocacy.org. The chapter coordinator is currently out on leave, but she should be back next week. 

Same goes for anyone who wants to start a new chapter as well! chapters@autisticadvocacy.org is the email to poke at!

kristen-guin:

Hey, kids! Let’s learn our ABCs of disability!

First letter: A!

A is a really cool letter! Can YOU name something really cool that has the letter A?

"Autism!"

That’s a really cool thing that has the letter A, but you know what else has the letter A and is really cool?

"Tell us, Ms. Kris! Tell us!"

Schedule A Employment!

"But, Ms. Kris, what is Schedule A Employment?"

Schedule A Employment is a federal employment program that basically puts people with disabilities on the fast track to employment in the federal government! You see, the federal government has realized that hiring people with disabilities is…well…cool so they want to hire as many people with disabilities as possible!

"Oh wow, Ms. Kris! Do you happen to have a link to a website that might contain more detail?"

Why, yes, I do! Thanks for asking! Here you go

Tomorrow, we will learn about the letter B so make sure to bring your thinking caps because I’m sure it’s going to B a fun time! Class dismissed!

Autism and Race Anthology

chavisory:

combinethetwo:

chavisory:

Okay, literally everything and everyone in my life needs attention or money. 

But the first-ever anthology of writing by autistic people of color needs money within the next two days to meet its fundraising goal.  Please give if you are able!  And, like, want to read this sure-to-be-amazing book, which I do.

I know this has ended but people still need to know about it

Yes, the Indiegogo fundraiser has ended, but that doesn’t mean you can’t donate anymore; that just means that it is slightly harder.

AWN is a registered 501(c)3 organization, and you can still donate by mail/check to the address at this link!

http://autismwomensnetwork.org/donate-to-awn/

Specify “autism and race anthology” in the check’s subject line.

Thank you everyone for your continued support/reblogging, and big, big thank yous to all the donors who took us from about half of our goal to two-thirds of the way there in the last few hours of the campaign!

neurowonderful:

Image description: The first photo shows me (a white-passing, femme young adult person) sitting in a wheelchair, holding one sign in my hands and with one leaning against my legs. The first sign says, “Got questions? Autistic adults are the best resource of parents of autistic kids. Autisticadcovacy.org”. The second sign says, “Autistic rights are human rights #lovenotfear”.

The second photo shows myself in my wheelchair with my signs and three other femme people who are all also holding signs. The visible signs are rainbow coloured and say “Love not fear”, “Think posAUtive”, “Autism Speaks does not speak for me!”, and “Autism is Awesome”. There is a small table behind us with a sign that says “free earplugs”, a box of earplugs, and ASAN pamphlets on top.

Pictures from Vancouver ASAN’s protest at the Autism Speaks walk this morning. I made those two signs I’m holding, Alanna made the rest of the signs, and Marvin took these photos. A few more people ended up coming so there were seven of us there (and Marvin). I think we all did good work today!

Now I’m going to go lie down and never get up.

Announcement about a new neurodiversity project! Wanna help?

ianthe:

Hey all!

So with the support of my employers, I’m going to be spearheading a project that will essentially be the go-to central knowledge hub for all things related to:

  • Neurodiversity
  • Disability rights
  • Self-advocacy
  • Practical guides for self-advocates and their supporters (i.e., step by step applying for Medicaid and HCBS waivers)
  • INFO BY, FOR, AND ABOUT PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES!

This is not just limited to autistic people! This is going to be a resource for EVERY neurodiverse person and their supporters. And NOT just limited to the United States!

Right now I’m working on brainstorming ideas for articles, categories, and just general subject matter that should be written about!!

IF YOU HAVE IDEAS YOU SHOULD MESSAGE ME AND I WILL GIVE YOU THE LINK TO THE GOOGLE DOC!

:D

Issy Stapleton and a Compassionate Response to Violence

thraenthraen:

Trigger warnings for ableism, murder, mention of suicide, victim-blaming, and probably other things. (Let me know if I missed something.)

I have been thinking a lot about Issy Stapleton (here is an article, but note that it comes with a trigger warning for victim-blaming and murderer-sympathising)—and about Alex Spourdalakis, Jaelen and Faith Edge, Randle Barrow, Mickey Liposchok, George Hodgins, Daniel Corby, Katherine McCarron, and so many others. The autism_memorial livejournal has over 180 separate accounts of murder (or, in a few cases, reported suicide) of autistic individuals—mostly by family members, caregivers, and even police. Even that list is an understatement. Crimes so often go unreported or misreported, or when they are reported (accurately), they may never have enough media coverage for the autistic community and our allies to find out. 

Of course I’m sad. Of course I’m mad. Of course there is a very angry, very hurt part of me that just wants to run around screaming and breaking things until this finally stops, until murdering your child (or anyone, but especially someone in your care) is never okay, never justified. I’ve taken so long with this post because I don’t know how to think about this without feeling a blinding rage or overwhelming sadness or both. This sucks.

Kelli Stapleton made a disgusting, inexcusable choice. Nothing justifies attempting to murder your child, okay? Lack of support services for families (and I will just point out that the Stapletons had access to an abundance of support services) does not justify murder. Autism does not justify murder. Nothing ever, ever, ever can justify or excuse this. We shouldn’t even have to talk about this. 

I have a choice, too, and I have been thinking a lot about it over the past few weeks. While the news hurts, while it makes me feel furious and frustrated and desperate and powerless, I have a choice in how I respond and in what I write here. I am not powerless, and we can change the conversation. In fact, we absolutely must change the conversation.

The first thing we must do is stop othering autistic people and others with disabilities. We need to value and prioritise their (our) voices and experiences. Spend some time listening to (or reading) the voices of autistic people. You could start with these:

On the subject of prioritising autistic voices, I am just going to link you to an excellent masterpost on why Autism Speaks is awful and must not be allowed to speak for autistic people. The tl;dr is that Autism Speaks perpetuates violence against autistic people both directly (see: the bit about the Judge Rotenberg Center) and indirectly (see: their constant messaging of autistic people as “burdens” and so on), and uses money that could be spent on support services and advocacy and instead spends it on eugenics research. Support organisations led and run by autistic people instead, such as the Autistic Self-Advocacy Network and the Autism Women’s Network.

And when we talk about voices, we have to talk about intersectionality and diversity. We have to talk about how the “face” of autism is always white, often male and middle-class when the reality is autistic people come in all races, ethnicities, classes, genders, sexualities, and so on. You might, for example, check out a blog like Queerability, which focuses on the intersection of the LGBTQ+ and disabled communities. Imagine people, including autistic people, complexly.

Once you’ve gotten a bit of a grasp on the complexity and nuance inherent in our community, it’s time to start educating those around you. Share the voices you find. Push back against stereotypes (even if they seem like “positive” stereotypes—”idiot savant” isn’t a compliment, and it devalues and erases autistic people who don’t fit that “ideal”) whenever you hear someone repeat them. Stand up to any suggestion that violence against a vulnerable population is justified.

And, bloody hell, if you are a parent (or caregiver) and the thought crosses your mind that things might be better if you killed your child (or person in your care), get help NOW. Please stop what you are doing and get help immediately. Call 911 (or the equivalent in your country). Before you reach a point of crisis, get connected with other parents and caregivers for support, such as Parenting Autistic Children with Love & Acceptance. And if someone is in any way justifying violence against your child, cut that toxicity out of your and your child’s life. 

The compassionate response to violence is not to side with the perpetuator of violence, nor is it to simply punish the perpetuator (although I am not arguing against punishment for Kelli Stapleton). Compassion goes further: it offers healing and safety to victims, and it fights to end the cycle of violence. We have a choice in how we respond, and if we are to choose compassion (which I certainly hope we will), we must do more with our pain. We must work toward a world without violence and where people like Issy Stapleton feel safe, loved, and valued. 

It’s been a tough few weeks trying to sort through all of my emotions about this, but somewhere, buried beneath all of my anger and frustration and sadness and rage and nausea and fear, I have just the tiniest bit of hope. A different world is possible. I need you to help me make it possible. Educate yourself. Educate your friends. Change the conversation.

autisticmakishima:

can someone recommend putty to stim with that doesn’t smell odd??

feminaspie:

does anyone know of any etsy stores etc run by autistic people that sell reasonably priced weighted blankets? most of the places i’m looking at atm are run by nonautistic people, feature puzzle pieces on their website, and are very much geared towards parents/teachers/carers etc, and tbh if i’m gonna shell out a load of money for a blanket i’d rather support an actual autistic person :/