Why Autism Speaks Does Not Deserve Your Support
Start writing a post
Health and Wellness

Why Autism Speaks Does Not Deserve Your Support

The renowned organization does more harm than good.

337
Why Autism Speaks Does Not Deserve Your Support
lohudblogs.com

April is Autism Awareness Month, which means that it’s more important than ever to be aware of the means with which we can help the autistic community gain visibility, acceptance and support. One way we can do this is participating in charitable initiatives and volunteering our time in the community. One way we should not do this is by supporting the popular charity, Autism Speaks.

Despite contributing the puzzle piece symbol that is practically synonymous with causes for autism, Autism Speaks is an extremely harmful charity when it comes to advocating for autism and autistic people.

One of the main principles of the disability movement is “Nothing About Us Without Us,” yet Autism Speaks has no autistic people on their board or in their leadership.

The only person high enough in a leadership role was John Elder Robison, the author of “Look Me In The Eyes: My Life With Asperger’s,” who quit in 2013. Autism Speaks claims in their mission statement to “[fund] global biomedical research into the causes, prevention, treatments and a possible cure for autism.” But how can an organization hope to achieve this with no input from the very group of people they claim to represent?

In addition, the concept of curing autism is a very dangerous one. Autism is a developmental disability and the search for cures usually involves abusive ABA therapy and erroneous anti-vaccination movements, both of which Autism Speaks have supported.

Autism Speaks’ mission statement goes on to claim that they will “find the missing pieces of the puzzle,” showing that “they don’t really value autistic people as fully human people. We are puzzles and we are missing pieces of ourselves, and we must become neurotypical in order to be respected by this group.”

With this mentality, Autism Speaks is also infamous for supporting the parents and families of autistic children, but never the children themselves. In one of a few harmful media pieces released by Autism Speaks, the short film “Autism Everyday” details the struggles of parents who have to raise an autistic child. Most of the video is focused on the things the parents had to surrender in order to take care of their child and how difficult their lives are, with almost no regard for how their children feel. The most disturbing part of this film is when one of the mothers claims that her non-autistic child is the only thing keeping her from driving her and her autistic daughter off the George Washington Bridge.

This disregard for the group of people they are actually advocating for also became noticeable when they blocked the inclusion of the Schakowsky Amendment, which calls for the inclusion of autistic people in autism support and advocacy groups, among other movements that promote diversity and inclusivity. Autism Speaks also brings in around $70,000,000 a year, of which only 3 percent goes back to families and autistic people.

Autism Speaks is a harmful and dangerous organization that does not positively affect the autistic community. If you are interested in providing support for the autistic community, organizations such as the Autistic Self Advocacy Network (ASAN) and the Autism Women’s Network are better charities to turn your efforts to.

For more details on the harm Autism Speaks inflicts, click here.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Lifestyle

New England Summers Are The BEST Summers

Why you should spend your next summer in New England.

307
Marconi Beach

Three years ago, I chose to attend college in Philadelphia, approximately 360 miles away from my small town in New Hampshire. I have learned many valuable lessons away from home, and have thoroughly enjoyed my time spent in Pennsylvania. One thing that my experience has taught me, however, is that it is absolutely impossible to beat a New England summer.

Keep Reading...Show less
Entertainment

Fibonacci Sequence Examples: 7 Beautiful Instances In Nature

Nature is beautiful (and so is math). The last one will blow your mind.

233956
illustration of the fibonacci sequence
StableDiffusion

Yes, the math major is doing a math-related post. What are the odds? I'll have to calculate it later. Many people have probably learned about the Fibonacci sequence in their high school math classes. However, I thought I would just refresh everyone's memories and show how math can be beautiful and apply to physical things everywhere around us with stunning examples.

Keep Reading...Show less
the beatles
Wikipedia Commons

For as long as I can remember, I have been listening to The Beatles. Every year, my mom would appropriately blast “Birthday” on anyone’s birthday. I knew all of the words to “Back In The U.S.S.R” by the time I was 5 (Even though I had no idea what or where the U.S.S.R was). I grew up with John, Paul, George, and Ringo instead Justin, JC, Joey, Chris and Lance (I had to google N*SYNC to remember their names). The highlight of my short life was Paul McCartney in concert twice. I’m not someone to “fangirl” but those days I fangirled hard. The music of The Beatles has gotten me through everything. Their songs have brought me more joy, peace, and comfort. I can listen to them in any situation and find what I need. Here are the best lyrics from The Beatles for every and any occasion.

Keep Reading...Show less
Being Invisible The Best Super Power

The best superpower ever? Being invisible of course. Imagine just being able to go from seen to unseen on a dime. Who wouldn't want to have the opportunity to be invisible? Superman and Batman have nothing on being invisible with their superhero abilities. Here are some things that you could do while being invisible, because being invisible can benefit your social life too.

Keep Reading...Show less
Featured

19 Lessons I'll Never Forget from Growing Up In a Small Town

There have been many lessons learned.

89749
houses under green sky
Photo by Alev Takil on Unsplash

Small towns certainly have their pros and cons. Many people who grow up in small towns find themselves counting the days until they get to escape their roots and plant new ones in bigger, "better" places. And that's fine. I'd be lying if I said I hadn't thought those same thoughts before too. We all have, but they say it's important to remember where you came from. When I think about where I come from, I can't help having an overwhelming feeling of gratitude for my roots. Being from a small town has taught me so many important lessons that I will carry with me for the rest of my life.

Keep Reading...Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments