#CelebrateDifferences, Autism Acceptance
5 million young people and adults in the US have been diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder and the diagnosis rate is increasing 10-17% each year making it the fastest-growing developmental disorder. 500,000 people with autism are transitioning into adulthood and so, The Autism Society of America has launched a new campaign, #CelebrateDifferences, focused on gaining acceptance of those with autism and not just awareness of the disorder. Their goal is to help those with autism to live fully in all areas of life through improved support and opportunities in education, employment, accessible housing, affordable health care, and comprehensive long-term services and support.
Autism is a complex, lifelong developmental disability that typically appears during early childhood and can impact a person’s relationships, self-regulation, communication, and social skills.
Common signs of autism include:
- Repetitive behaviors, movements, or phrases
- Lack of response to normal stimuli such as their name
- Atypical verbal communication or non-speaking
- Difficulty understanding or expressing feelings
- Avoiding eye contact
Autism Acceptance Means:
- As we work to create a more accepting society, we must also accept autistic individuals for who they are. Acceptance is often one of the biggest barriers to being valued and finding and developing a strong support system.
- Fostering acceptance is an essential step to improving opportunities in education, employment, accessible housing, affordable health care, and more.
- It is not enough to be aware of autism, our society needs to accept the autism community and take actionable steps to better support individuals to live quality, meaningful and supported lives. Acceptance puts pressure on our leaders to dedicate more funding to support services for the autistic community
So this April help us #CelebrateDifferences by getting involved, and/or donating to the Autism Society so they can continue their work of gaining acceptance for people with autism.
The Autism Society Helpline offers trained Information & Referral (I&R) Specialists to provide resources to services and support across the country. To speak to an I&R Specialist directly, call 800-3-AUTISM (800-328-8476), or email [email protected]. Visit www.Autism-Society.org to learn more.