Autistic people face higher rates of abuse, institutionalization, suicide, and police violence. Despite that, many autistic people lack the resources, support, and information needed to avoid and respond to those threats.
As a staff member at DRO, I have heard first-hand from hundreds of people who felt threatened by neighbors, police officers, family members, or their guardian, or from family members who were struggling to support them.
The toolkit covers bullying, interactions with police, mental health, navigating the community, safety in school, and more, and offers guides for both autistic self-advocates and their family members.
It offers resources and referrals, first person stories, and tips for planning, response, and advocacy.
Some of the communication tips for family members are useful in supporting your loved one to make choices in other areas, like voting, working, or support services.
ASAN says, “We are safest when we are included in our communities and empowered to take control of our own lives.”
Visit the Autism & Safety Toolkit to learn more.
Esther Harlow is a Voting Rights Advocate at Disability Rights Oregon.