Collaborative Advocacy in the Autism Community: An Inclusive Framework for Social Change

This panel presentation features personal perspectives of Autistic Adults and Parents and highlights their collaborative projects through social media, and other means, to challenge negative stigma about Autism, and to promote social justice and human rights. They will share their framework for collaboration, which honours differences in communication/processing and recognizes that the future of neurologically diverse society is dependent on the development of inclusive practices. At the end of this session participants will be able to:   • identify strategies to support collaborative work in advocacy approaches between parents and Autistic adults.    • list effective strategies that honour diverse processing and communication styles and foster a relationship of trust   • discuss and share examples of collaborative advocacy projects created through the use of social media platforms and identify a minimum of three information platforms or sites which amplify the voices of Autistic adults   • explain the positive impact of the online relationships in building community and in supporting Autistic people in self-determining roles that impact public policy and opinion.    • summarize the importance of including Autistic adults in conversations around autism and the importance of reframing Autism so that is not seen through the stigmatized lens of tragedy.

Leah Kelley, Lei Wiley-Mydske, Beth  Ryan, Kassiane Sibley