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Mon Feb 23, 2015, 08:08 PM

 

Autistic People Spark Twitter Fight Against Autism Speaks (xpost from GD)

http://www.buzzfeed.com/virginiahughes/autistic-people-spark-twitter-fight-against-autism-speaks

Wednesday will mark the 10th birthday of Autism Speaks, the world’s largest autism advocacy organization. To celebrate, Autism Speaks encouraged its 168,000 Twitter followers and 1.5 million Facebook fans to use the hashtag #AutismSpeaks10 to share “how AS has touched your life.”

Instead of heartwarming stories of gratitude, the hashtag has sparked hundreds of angry missives from autistic people and their supporters who say Autism Speaks does not speak for them.

“It really came out of the autistic Twittersphere, which saw this as an opportunity to highlight the fact that Autism Speaks’ 10 years of existence have, in fact, made things worse for us, not better,” Ari Ne’eman, president of the Autistic Self Advocacy Network, told BuzzFeed News.

Its detractors claim that Autism Speaks portrays autism as a frightening disease in desperate need of a cure. Some are also angry that the organization has no autistic people in positions of senior leadership, and say that it doesn’t put enough of its ample resources toward programs that will improve their everyday lives.


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