Hello friend,

At the beginning of March, our community came together to remember and mourn for disabled people killed by family members and caregivers. In a dozen cities, we gathered with our friends and allies to ensure that no one in our community would be forgotten. In doing so, we were reminded not only of the terrible things that too often happen to us – but also of the real value of communal space. In coming together, we are able to face even the most horrific of crimes.

As we approach April, this bears remembering. For many years now, Autistic people have dreaded April, knowing that Autism Awareness Month typically brings with it the worst kind of pity and fear-mongering. Does it really have to be this way? What if we built a different April, centered around the experiences of Autistic people ourselves? What if we stood up together to say awareness is not enough? This April, we are asking you to help us make a change for the better. Starting later this month, ASAN will be launching a campaign to re-brand April as Autism Acceptance Month.

We are setting up a website to help publicize events across the country and you can be a part of it. We want you to set up an Autism Acceptance Month event in your local community and let us know about it!

Check out our tip sheet on the ASAN website for ideas about local community events you can organize. Then let us know about it at acceptance@autisticadvocacy.org and we will work with you to help publicize your event and connect you to Autism Acceptance Month festivities. We will be working on this from now until the end of April, so don’t hesitate to contact us if there’s anything we can do to help you in your efforts. In addition, we want everyone to be involved – whether you are Autistic, family member, professional or an ally without any formal connection to the Autistic community. All are welcome.

All of us have a stake in making April about something real. At the end of the day, awareness is not enough. Together, we can do better. Will you join us?

As always, Nothing About Us, Without Us!
Ari Ne’eman
Autistic Self Advocacy Network