About A4About A4 convenor Wed, 20/8/2008 - 09:59
Autism Aspergers Advocacy Australia (A4) is the national grassroots advocacy organisation providing systemic advocacy1 for autistic people2 and others (family members and partners) living with ASD. A4 is a disability representative organisation (DRO) recognised on the DSS National Disability Representative Organisations webpage. A4 is also a member of the Australian Autism Alliance.
A4 aims to represent the views of its members at the federal/national level. If there is something you want said about autism/ASD and related issues, just tell the A4 Management Group or A4's Convenor.
A4 is a national organisation; A4 focuses on national policy, services and supports. A4 is not a state level organisation: A4 does not usually have the capacity to address issues at a state/territory level. For example, it is difficult for A4 to tackle issues relating to a particular state/territory's education system. When possible, A4 works with state/territory advocacy groups (where they exist) on state/territory matters.
A4 does not represent a particular view; it aims to represent the views of its members. There are issues where the ASD community has a range of (conflicting) views; issues where there is no consensus view. In such cases, A4 tries to recognise, respect and represent the range of views it finds in the ASD community. When views about an issue vary, A4 does not choose sides; instead, A4 makes it clear to Government (and others) that there are varied views in the ASD community.
Autistic people and their associates need effective voices. A4's voice is more convincing to government if it has more members. A4 membership is FREE but is only available to people living in Australia. Just register on this website. Please join A4 and get your friends to join too.
A4 maintains this website that contains information relating to ASD in Australia and overseas. We hope people will find it useful.
Our advocacy and activities depend entirely on the efforts of our members. A4's past achievements are due entirely to our members making it happen. A4 depends on members like you getting together (over the internet) and acting on ideas. There is a lot that has not been done yet. A4 offers enormous scope for passionate and effective people.
A4 is a member of the Disability Australia Consortium: see DSS webpage: National disability representative organisations. A4 works with the Australian Federation of Disability Organisations (AFDO) on wider disability issues at the federal level.
From its very earliest days, A4 has maintained strong autistic representation in its governance. A4's current Management Group has:
- 50% autistic members (and a Co-convenor who self identified as neuro-divergent from an early age);
- 50% of A4's Management Group are parents of autistic children.
While all members of A4's current Management Group are experienced in disability service provision, research, and/or regulation, their first priority is to improve outcomes for autistic Australians.
1 Systemic advocacy is about addressing problems and challenges in how service and support systems work. A4 in not funded and has minimal capacity to help individuals.
2Autistic people means people diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) including people diagnosed with Asperger's Disorder/Syndrome and PDD-NOS. The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th edition (known as the DSM-5), published in May 2013 and the recent text revision DSM-5-TR (2022), combine Autistic Disorder, Asperger's Disorder and Pervasive Developmental Disorder not otherwise specified (known as PDD-NOS), previously described in the 4th edition (DSM-IV and DSM-IV-TR) as separate conditions, into one disorder that it calls ASD (see Autism Spectrum Disorder in DSMs and ICD-10).
A4 is ...A4 is ...
A4 is ...
- a national grassroots organisation for people with autism/ASD, their families and other associates
- focussed on the development and promotion of national Autism Spectrum Disorder policy and priorities
- an network of people using e-mail and the internet for communication
- concerned primarily with the 'big picture' issues
- conducting activities that target autism/ASD awareness and policy in the federal government.
- acting to complement the work of the Australian Advisory Board on Autism Spectrum Disorders
- a small step in a long process
Autism Aspergers Advocacy Australia (A4) formed in response to growing demands from people with an autism spectrum condition and their families who wanted more direct involvement in raising the profile of autism-related issues with decision-makers, government and through the media. A4's advocacy gives voice at national level for individuals and groups involved with autism/ASD across Australia.
A4's current convenor is Bob Buckley
A4 is not ...
- an autism/ASD support group (A4's focus is systemic advocacy)
- a protest group
- advocating at the State or Territory level
- an e-mail list, chat group or on-line forum ... it uses technologies for advocacy
- a cure for Autism
On Sunday, 1st September 2002, a small group of people interested in forming a national, grassroots autism spectrum (including Asperger's) advocacy organisation met in Albury, NSW. The meeting decided to form such an organisation and that it should be called "Autism Aspergers Advocacy Australia" ... known as A4 for short.
A steering committee was formed. Judy Brewer-Fischer was A4's initial Convenor.
Autism Aspergers Advocacy Australia (A4) launched at 5pm on Tuesday, 12th November 2002, at the Inaugural World Autism Congress 2002.
The launch included a comprehensive briefing about the roles and aims of A4.
Vision and MissionVision and Mission convenor Wed, 20/8/2008 - 10:05
Autistic people (or people with Autism Spectrum Disorder - ASD) in Australia will:
- live as independently as they can; and
- choose and achieve their personal goals and aspirations.
All Australians will:
- remove barriers to the participation and achievement of autistic people (or people with ASD), their families and carers;
- recognise and value the contributions that autistic people (or people with ASD), their families and carers make to their community;
- respect and appreciate the diversity that autistic people bring to their community and to the nation; and
- ensure autistic people (or people with ASD), their families and carers can receive, in a timely manner, the education, treatment, services, support, protections, participation and opportunities that they need.
Autism Aspergers Advocacy Australia will:
- advocate nationally for progress towards our vision;
- educate and inform people in Australia about Autism Spectrum Disorder; and
- monitor and report on issues and outcomes relating to autistic people (or people with ASD) and their associates.
A4 hopes that one day, it will not be needed: that Australian government and society will recognise and address the support needs of autistic people without needing a frank and forthright organisation to promote their interests.
Contact A4Contact A4 convenor Thu, 26/2/2009 - 10:38
Contact the A4 Convenor by email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Since A4 is an internet (virtual) organisation and runs on a minimal budget, it does not have a physical address (it only has an internet address). It has no office, no telephone and no postal/mail address. If you need to talk with an A4 official, then please send an email and a telephone conversation can be organised.
Membership issues should be sent to email@example.com