Autism: Awareness is Not Enough

Autism Awareness

April 2 has been designated as World Autism Awareness Day (did you know?). But Steve Silberman explains why that is not enough:

“No matter where you stand on the rising numbers, there is one undeniably shocking thing about them. Once that 1-in-88 kid grows to adulthood, our society offers little to enable him or her to live a healthy, secure, independent, and productive life in their own community. When kids on the spectrum graduate from high school, they and their families are often cut adrift — left to fend for themselves in the face of dwindling social services and even less than the meager level of accommodations available to those with other disabilities.

Meanwhile, the lion’s share of the money raised by star-studded “awareness” campaigns goes into researching potential genetic and environmental risk factors — not to improving the quality of life for the millions of autistic adults who are already here, struggling to get by. At the extreme end of the risks they face daily is bullying, abuse, and violence, even in their own homes…”

He goes on to ask a group of self-advocates, parents and teachers how to go beyond once-a-year ‘awareness’ to create a truly neurodiverse society. (via NeuroTribes)