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Lydia X.Z. Brown, a policy counsel at the Center for Democracy & Technology known as Autistic Hoya online. Photos: Gabriella Demczuk

Autism Is an Identity, Not a Disease: Inside the Neurodiversity Movement

Activists argue that rather than trying to ‘cure’ or treat the neurodivergent, society should learn to accept, appreciate, and accommodate their needs

“Disability culture is so full of joy. We dance together; we support each other; we share pictures; we make families together.”

For many autistic adults, Autism Speaks is the enemy, and represents the goal of eliminating autism rather than embracing autistic people as part of human diversity.

Jessica Benham recently won the Democratic nomination for Pennsylvania House District 36. If she wins in the November general election, she’d be the first openly autistic woman elected to the state legislature.

Activists argue that rather than disabled people trying to conform and pass unnoticed among the general population, the world needs to change to accept, appreciate, and accommodate the needs of millions of Americans.

Margaret Price, PhD, an Ohio State University professor who experiences post-traumatic stress disorder and wrote the book Mad at School, about mental disability in higher education.

Journalist writing about science, children, mental health, race, gender, disability, education and related topics. Author of The Good News About Bad Behavior.