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For the record: FAQs

See below to learn more about our positions on key topics.

What is Autism Speaks Canada’s position on a “cure”?

Autism Speaks Canada is not looking for a cure. We are seeking research advancements that improve the quality of life for people with autism today and appropriate personalized treatments in the future. We remain committed to funding research, understanding the causes for autism and accelerating progress towards personalized treatments.

Do vaccines cause autism?

Over the last two decades there has been extensive research to determine whether there is a link between childhood vaccinations and autism. The result of this research is that vaccines do not cause autism.

What is Autism Speaks Canada’s position on eugenics and aversion therapy?

We do not support eugenics and/or the use of aversion therapy.

Why does Autism Speaks Canada use a puzzle piece?

The puzzle piece means different things to different people, just as autism is a different experience for everyone on the spectrum. For Autism Speaks Canada, it’s been a symbol of our work to promote solutions, across the spectrum and throughout the life span, for the needs of people with autism and their families. In 2020, we reimagined the blue puzzle piece to include a spectrum of colors in addition to our traditional blue. The new, more colorful logo signifies the diversity of perspectives and experiences with autism spectrum disorder and signals our deepened commitment to inclusivity. We welcome an ongoing dialogue with our constituents on this and other issues of importance to those in the autism community.

Are autistic Canadians represented in the Autism Speaks Canada Board of Directors and employees?

Yes, autistic individuals are represented at all levels in Autism Speaks Canada. We have self-identified autistic individuals on our board of directors, staff, advisory committees and volunteer teams. We value inclusivity and diversity in our workforce; as well as respect our employees’ personal decision to self-identify or disclose their autism diagnosis. We comply with the Employment Equity Act and provide equal employment opportunities for all.

Does autism cause violent behaviour?

Research has found no evidence that people on the autism spectrum are more violent than the general population. In fact, teens and adults with autism are more likely to be the victims of crime. A good source for a broad review of the literature on autism and violence is available here. We know that speculation and misinformation about autism and other neurodevelopmental disabilities have hurtful and lasting consequences. Misconceptions about autism or any other neurological disabilities can lead to increased stigmatization and prejudice toward peaceful and productive members of society. To this effect, we stay committed to increasing understanding and acceptance of autistic Canadians.

Have more questions?

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