|About 50 years ago, Autism Society launched its first autism awareness campaign. Over the years, that campaign has grown and been adopted by organizations around the world. At the end of 2007, the UN General Assembly designated April 2 as World Autism Awareness Day.|
Today, April has become more than a month of autism awareness. Ask nearly any self-advocate, or #ActuallyAutistic individual, and they will tell you that recognizing autism is no longer sufficient. April gives us a reason to celebrate those with autism, a reason to focus on supporting and including them and their families, and a reason to seek out individuals with autism to learn more about who they are as friends, colleagues, family members, spouses, etc.
With everything going on in the world today, this April becomes especially relevant for better understanding those with autism. The drastic changes to our daily routines have meant the loss of employment, schooling, or day programs for so many individuals with autism; people who rely on consistent schedules to reduce their anxiety and provide opportunities for inclusion. Now, more than ever, we must listen, learn, understand, and support.