As an autistic person, I feel the need to help inform the public, especially on this important Autistic Pride Day.
Please, please DO NOT SUPPORT AUTISM SPEAKS.
Autism Speaks hates autistic people. Autistic people have been treated horribly by this corporation. They have done many, many really shady things that should be brought to public attention, yet they are often seen as the “face” of autism because they are so large. This is a LIE. Autistic people DO NOT want to be represented by Autism Speaks. We do not support Autism Speaks. We do not want Autism Speaks to continually pretend to “help” us while raking in massive corporate profits, that we, disabled people, will never see.
So What’s SO Bad About Autism Speaks?
- Autism Speaks does not have a single autistic member on their board.
Autism Speaks only spends 3% of their budget on “family services”.
Much of Autism Speaks’ money goes toward research, and much of that research centers on finding a way to eliminate autism, and thus, autistics (which will likely be done through a prenatal test, in the same way that the Down’s Syndrome test is conducted).
Autism Speaks produces advertisements, small films, etc. about what a burden autistic people are to society.
Autism Speaks was responsible for “Autism Every Day”, which featured a member of their board talking about contemplating murder-suicide of her daughter in front of her daughter. This has now be removed from Autism Speaks’ Youtube channel.
Autism Speaks is responsible for the atrocity known as “I am Autism”, a short film produced by the Academy Award Winning Alfonso Cuaron, who also directed the 3rd Harry Potter movie (yes, really) and features an ominous voice saying things like “I am autism…I know where you live…I work faster than pediatric AIDS, cancer, and diabetes combined…I will make sure your marriage fails.”
This woman’s job offer was rescinded after she asked Autism Speaks for accommodations in caring for her autistic son. They refused, and she made necessary accommodations for childcare, but they withdrew her offer anyways.
Autism Speaks shared the news of Google removing hate speech regarding autistics from Google’s autofill feature, completely erasing any mention of autistic people’s flashblogs having anything to do with the change. It was only after a member of the autism community (and not a parent, but an autistic person themselves) spoke with a reporter about the flashblog and a statement was released to the media that Google decided to make this change.
Autism Speaks highlighted AAC use, while erasing those those who actually use AAC devices to communicate. The focus was on the caretakers, not on the autistic people themselves. (The attached link has a link to a rebuttal by a nonspeaking autistic person, Amy Sequenzia).
Autism Speaks has violated copyright and has profited off an autistic advocate’s writing for three years.
Is that not enough? Here, have way more of Autism Speaks dirty laundry that they don’t want you to know about.
Do not donate to Autism Speaks. Do not support them. Educate yourself on why they are so horrible. I like Emma Stone and I like Andrew Garfield, but they are obviously unaware of the horrors that go on behind closed curtains when it comes to Autism Speaks.
Please spread the word and listen to autistic people, not Autism Speaks!