Tag Archives: Policies

Picture of E1G student leads discussion about Autism at Work

First Annual AFU Inspires an Autism Friendly Future

Everyone who registered to attend the  Autism Friendly Unconference was given the opportunity  to ask a question or suggest a topic so that Every1Games could address the most meaningful issues surrounding autism.  We had amazing feedback and can’t wait to do it again next year!

  • The list of topics addressed in this series was co-created, based on questions and topics submitted by  Autism Friendly Unconference registrants.
  • 14% of registrants self-identified as autistic and willing to discuss their experiences.
  • Most of the remaining registrants were people who supported someone on the spectrum either at home or work.

It was an awesome experience. So much new information and concepts! – Autism Friendly Participant

DMZ HouseKeeping PresentationDiscussions ranged from issues with funding processes and application criteria, to the representation of ASD in media. Participants were clear that Ontario’s support system needs improvement especially in the area of employment training and ASD sensitivity from co-workers, something we hope to address at the next AFU.  It was unanimous that employers need to be more knowledgeable.  The autistic youth at the event were very clear, asking employers for guidance and understanding, instead of doubt and low expectations.

These 20 topics listed below will help shape our discussions and together we can design an autism friendly future.

  1. Exploring Media Representation of People w/ASD
  2. Autism at School (Elementary)
  3. Autism at School (Secondary)
  4. Autism at School (Post-Secondary)
  5. High Functioning Autism at Work
  6. Life Planning; From Child to Adult
  7. Defining Social Success; The Morality of “Fitting In”
  8. Reducing Anxiety
  9. Non-Verbal Voices
  10. The Multiplicity of an Individuals Functioning Levels
  11. Social Skills Development
  12. Tips and Skills for Happiness
  13. The Language We Use
  14. Women and Autism
  15. Culturally Sensitive Support
  16. Autism and Videogames
  17. Using Interactive Media for Social Change
  18. Autistic Self Advocacy
  19. Funding
  20. Designing an Autism Friendly Future

picture of people engaged in conversation

It was the first time in my life being surrounded by other autistics. It was the first time in my life I saw myself reflected in a group of other people. It made me feel real, valid and loved. – Autism Friendly Participant

If autism is meaningful in your life, then we want to hear from you. If you’ve never even heard the word autism and stumbled upon this series, we also want to hear from you. So please share this with friends, family, neighbours and co-workers.

At the end of the day on Jan 11th, the Autism Friendly Unconference closed by asking the questions “What do you want from the Government, from educators, employers, and peers?, What does an autism friendly future look like?” Here is the link to a collaborative Google Doc that was created during the final session of the day, where we came together to discuss an Autism Friendly Future.

Thanks to the volunteer team from the UofT Autism Alliance who were taking notes in each session making it possible to share information from sessions you might have missed and to all who participated including our friends at the EDGE Lab, the Autistic Self Advocacy Network, Marathon Learning Materials, TAD’s Inc. and Autism Ontario.

We are looking forward to hearing from you as we begin Designing an Autism Friendly Future.  If you have questions please contact us anytime! Leave a comment, share videos, poems or what ever else you want to share to help your peers come to a better understanding of autism.

Cheers to an autism friendly future!

– Sarah Anne Drew