April is Autism Awareness Month and each year April 2nd is celebrated as World Autism Awareness Day. In 2007, the United Nations unanimously declared April 2 as World Autism Awareness Day to improve the lives of individuals with disabilities by raising awareness and acceptance.
As defined by the UN, “Autism is a lifelong neurological condition that manifests during early childhood, irrespective of gender, race or socio-economic status. The term Autism Spectrum refers to a range of characteristics. Appropriate support, accommodation and acceptance of this neurological variation allow those on the Spectrum to enjoy equal opportunity, and full and effective participation in society.”
This year the United Nations will observe Autism Awareness Day at their headquarters in New York on April 5, with discussions around the theme, “Empowering Women and Girls with Autism.” The program for the event includes a group of dynamic speakers from around the world, including self-advocates, students, professors, professionals, and artists.
Today and every day we should strive to empower individuals with Autism with the resources and opportunities to make their own choices and act as their self-advocates. Remembering and acting on the mantra “Nothing About Us Without Us” is integral to destroying stigma and full acceptance and inclusion in society.
Wondering how you can do that?
- Sign the pledge to promote inclusion
- Include the voices of people with Autism in conversations on all levels
- Advocate for legislation that promotes services and supports for people with disabilities
- Donate to and support self-advocacy organizations like: