Conference of States Parties (CoSP) to the CRPD, 11 – 13 June 2019

AFDO is pleased to be participating again this year in the 12th Session of the Conference of States Parties (CoSP) to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD).  CoSP will be held from 11th to 13th June 2019 at the United Nations Headquarters in New York.

AFDO and A4 are co-sponsoring a side event, "Leave No Autistic Mother Behind: Autism and Motherhood – Experiences, Challenges and Positive Strategies",  on Thursday 13th June from 3pm – 4:15pm (New York time).

Have your say on the future of autism research

Today we call on autistic Australians, families, carers, and the broader autism community to have their say on the future of autism research priorities. Individuals and organisations involved in providing services and supports, as well as managing policy that affect autistic people and the autism community are also asked to contribute.

The outcome of this community consultation process will help guide the future focus of autism research activities and research funding in Australia.
 

Here's what needs to happen to get the NDIS back on track

Helen Dickinson

More than 277,000 people have already benefited from the NDIS, but there’s room to improve.

In one of his first official public remarks since being re-elected, Prime Minister Scott Morrison pledged that addressing failures in the national disability insurance scheme (NDIS) would be a priority for the new government.

Stuart Robert has assumed the role of minister for the NDIS and will be charged with delivering on this important agenda.

So what does the new minister need to do to get the NDIS back on track?

SA: Family struggling to find carers for autistic daughter despite NDIS funding

Helen Campbell knows the risk her daughter Annie poses. Her needs have been deemed so complex, that the South Australian Government has funded two carers at once to look after her in recent years.

Despite current funding through Disability SA, Ms Campbell and her eldest daughter Lisa have struggled to find agencies or carers willing to take Annie on a long-term basis.

She is worried this will only be more complicated when her daughter transitions to the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) at the end of June.

Landmark summit on autism health care kicks off

A panel of autism scientists and advocates is charged with a tall order: making recommendations for the care of autistic people worldwide. The panel is slated to meet for the first time today after the 2019 International Society for Autism Research annual meeting in Montreal.

Convened by the journal The Lancet, the group includes more than 20 of the world’s leading autism researchers, clinicians and advocates. Its goal is to review research and make concrete suggestions on health care and health policy.

Autism Scorecard - Federal Election 2019

The Australian Autism Alliance released its 2019 federal election autism scorecard! It helps understand how the major parties will create #Change4Autism if elected to govern on Saturday 18 May.

Download the #Change4Autism campaign from www.australianautismalliance.org.au/election2019!

The four major priorities of the Change4Autism Election Manifesto were:

  1. Urgent action to eliminate NDIS barriers to vital supports for autistic people
  2. A National Autism Strategy
  3. Establish a Royal Commission into violence, abuse and neglect of people with a disability
  4. High-impact, sustainable disability advocacy

Against these priorities the parties fared:

Advocates blame NDIS failures as families give up severely disabled children to child protection

Richard Willingham

Children with high-needs disabilities are living in child protection because their parents can no look longer after them, with advocates blaming a lack of support from the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) for forcing parents to give up their children.

Key points:

  • The McNeills gave their son up to state care because he needed 24-hour supervision and they did not have enough help from the NDIS
  • Only half of the 48 children living in residential state care in Victoria have some form of NDIS support
  • The situation was labelled "horrendous and appalling" by advocates, who say children have a right to stay in their own home

The Concept of Neurodiversity Is Dividing the Autism Community

Simon Baron-Cohen

    It remains controversial—but it doesn't have to be

    At the annual meeting of the International Society for Autism Research (INSAR) in Montreal, Canada, this week, one topic likely to be widely debated is the concept of neurodiversity. It is dividing the autism community, but it doesn’t have to.

    The term “neurodiversity” gained popular currency in recent years but was first used by Judy Singer, an Australian social scientist, herself autistic, and first appeared in print in the Atlantic in 1998.

    Families need guidance before buying a communication app for autism

    Cathy Binger

    Many children with autism have little to no functional speech, and their families are often desperate to help them communicate.

    In today’s connected society, these families are likely to hear about a variety of communication apps — some specifically targeted at children with autism — available for mobile devices, including iPads. Often the advertisement includes a video of a child who starts communicating using the app’s voice output, effortlessly asking for a cup of juice or saying, for the first time, “I love you.”

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