Hi everyone. Today is World Autism Acceptance Day. Within World Autism Acceptance Week. Within World Autism Acceptance Month. (Phew that’s a lot to get your heads around!).
It’s a time of mixed feelings for a lot of autistic people. It’s a tricky one, there has been progress due to the name change from awareness to acceptance. However I think it needs to go even further beyond acceptance. We really need greater understanding within society.
It is a yearly opportunity that comes around to raise awareness about Autism and how it affects people which is great. Many people take part in different sponsored events to raise money for charities that support autistic people and their families which is brilliant however I wish there was more of spotlight on autistic people and their voices and opinions, it’s getting there but there’s a long way to go.
To me it should be a month that celebrates and elevates autistic voices and appreciates and respects us for who we are. Things need to go further than just the month, for example I’d like to see companies that have posted about it really committing to making their workplaces more inclusive and diverse.
Also: I’ve never been contacted so much within the space of two weeks as many people rush to get the point of view from Autistic people like myself. Which is great don’t get me wrong (overwhelming for sure) but it’s a shame it’s all based around April. Myself and many other autistic people are keen to be heard all year round.
It’s not just a month to us, it’s our lives and our everyday and more people need to understand that. It is essential to listen to and value what autistic people say about their experiences.