letter/email to David Bowen, NDIA CEO, on NDIS Early Intervention

Dear Mr Bowen,

Autism Aspergers Advocacy Australia (A4), the national grassroots advocacy group for autism spectrum disorder (ASD), is alarmed and disappointed by the National Disability Insurance Agency’s (NDIA’s) video on Facebook (see https://www.facebook.com/NDISAus/videos/594542027373310/ … a transcript is given below) about how its Early Childhood Early Intervention (ECEI) Approach is meant to work for autistic children. Disappointingly, this video shows that the NDIA continues to ignore/rejects expert advice and the peer reviewed research literature that defines best practice (and evidence-based) early intervention (EI) for autistic children (see http://a4.org.au/node/843).

The NDIA’s video features Michelle and her children (hopefully not their real names). While the following is critical of the video’s content, it is not intended to criticise Michelle who appears to be doing her best for her children. The NDIA is wholly responsible for the content of the video.

Gender stereotypes have made us horrible at recognizing autism in women and girls

In August, the National Autistic Society called on medical professionals to change the way they diagnose women and girls with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Ever since the term autism was first coined by Hans Asperger in 1944, it has remained predominantly, if anecdotally, associated with men and boys. As a result, women with the condition may be being overlooked, even as the public becomes increasingly aware of its existence.

What happens when people with autism grow old?

Rebecca Ann Charlton, Goldsmiths, University of London

If you mention autism to most people they will think about children, but it is a lifelong diagnosis. Children with autism grow up to be adults with autism. Little is known about how the symptoms change with age. This is because autism is a relatively new disorder, first described in 1943 and not regularly identified until the 1970s. It is only now that those people first diagnosed are reaching older age that we can start to learn whether the disorder changes over a lifetime.

There have been some suggestions that symptoms may reduce as people get older. These reports, describing fewer difficulties with older age, are often from people with autism themselves and from their families. But how much evidence is there for this? Our latest research provides some answers, and also raises some new questions.

Survey about autistic girls

Yellow Ladybugs is conducting a survey about autistic girls, girls diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder.

More information about the survey, and the survey itself, are at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/yellowlad...


This survey is focused on the experience of autistic girls, aged under 18 years old.  

We invite parents, carers and autistic girls under 18 to respond to this very important survey.  

Submission to the Royal Commission into the Protection and Detention of Children in the Northern Territory

The Royal Commission into the Protection and Detention of Children in the Northern Territory 
PO Box 4215,
Kingston ACT 2604

email: ChildDetentionNT@royalcommission.gov.au

 

Dear Commissioners

Autism Aspergers Advocacy Australia (A4) is a national grassroots organisation advocating for autistic people (people diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder – ASD).

This submission is about more than autism; it is about Australia’s general lack of expertise and services for people with challenging behaviour.

Paediatrician who hogtied seven-year-old beats assault charge

A GOLD COAST paediatrician who hogtied a seven-year-old patient has been acquitted of assaulting the boy on appeal.

Neville Goodwin Davis was last year found guilty in Southport Magistrates Court of assaulting the child during an October 2012 consultation during which he tied the boy up with rope.

Dr Davis specialised in behavioural conditions and had been consulted by the boy's mother to see if he had Asperger Syndrome.

He said he initially tied the boy to a chair to occupy him so he could talk to the mother

Boy with autism locked in 'cage', NSW school being investigated

By Louise Milligan

A private school for children with autism is being investigated after allegations a boy at the school was being held unsupervised in a lockable fenced structure he called a "cage".

Key points:

  • Lynda Jordan says she saw her son, Toby, locked in "the cage"
  • School investigation disputes Ms Jordan's interpretation
  • NSW Greens say dozens of parents have similar complaints

Autism cage details emerge as United Nations investigates abuse of children

Emma Macdonald 

Disturbing new details of a Canberra school placing a 10-year-old boy with autism in a cage have come to light, as the case spearheads an investigation by the United Nations into potential human rights violations of 55 students with disabilities across Australian schools.

While the boy's parents do not wish to make a public statement and do not want their son's identity or school revealed, Fairfax Media can confirm that the boy was forcibly placed in the cage on a handful of occasions early last year.

Autism is leading disability type for students restrained in Aussie schools

A summary of dozens of cases of students with disability who were restrained in Aussie schools and reported to the United Nations shows autism/ASD was the predominant disability among the students.

The report, entitled Summary: Human Rights Violations of Disabled Children in Australian Education settings, is available from https://www.scribd.com/document/31886457... or the links below. 

UN asked to investigate 'abuses' of disabled students in Australian schools

Henrietta Cook

The United Nations has been asked to investigate dozens of incidents in which children with disabilities were allegedly assaulted, locked in dark rooms and restrained in Australian schools.

The request, which was made on behalf of 55 families by a group of disability organisations, cited "widespread and grave" violations of students' human rights.

The group is seeking international intervention because it claims Australia has failed to act.

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