The annual Autism Awareness Day of PTEM was recently held on the 4th of April, but this year was a little different, as controversy behind the usage of blue ribbons arose. As it turns out, we should be spreading Autism Acceptance, and using red ribbons instead.
Awareness does not automatically lead to acceptance, but not challenging harmful tropes and ideas can lead to harmful incidents… I am not broken, nor a missing puzzle piece, vaccine damaged or injured. I am a whole human being, just like everyone else.
It turns out awareness events have been labelled as “bewareness” events, and has been somewhat of a “no-go” zone within those in the spectrum. Especially with the re-emergence of “anti-vac” movements, where parents refuse to vaccinate their children as they believe that vaccinations lead to autism, the insensitivity targeted towards those in the autism spectrum disorder have been going on for as long as vaccinations have been a thing.
The event organizers of PTEM were aware of this, but did not do anything to change it with the excuse of having done the same thing since the awareness events were first established. But we at The Equinox, would like to ask for the understanding and compassion of those that will be holding the event next year, to keep this article in mind. Spread acceptance, not awareness, folks.