Autistic People Are Not Failed Versions of “Normal”

They’re different, not less

normal-1When people with developmental disabilities have the support they need to thrive, everyone benefits. In a speech at the United Nations on April 1, Steve Silberman made the case that it’s past time we all learned to honor neurodiversity. An edited version of his text follows. We are living at a very exciting time — a time of great hope for autistic people and their families.
Read the full article here.

The 5 Levels of Inclusion

Autism-AwarenessDehumanization is one of the great societal tragedies. Once we dehumanize a group we are free to exclude them, deny their rights, and inflict violence. Whenever a particular group experiences dehumanization it is the weakest among them who face the most extreme consequences.  On most occasions these are those with disabilities. Inclusion prevents dehumanization. When a group is included they become real to the mainstream population.  What makes them real is the creation of physical, emotional, and intellectual ties or connections.  In short, inclusion makes those previously excluded fully human. When this occurs the mainstream population finds it much more difficult to exclude them socially,