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Note: The Autism Project, Ontario, is no longer active


The Autism Project was a community development initiative. We received no private or public funding. Our work was inspired by the Leadership Development Network, a series of cross-disability and self-advocacy workshops, 1997 to 1998.


In 1997 leadership in the Ontario autism community was the exclusive domain of non-autistics. The Autism Project recognised the value of independent autistic adults, including those whose views do not agree with mainstream ideals and especially those whose disagreement is founded in fear of, or deliberate exclusion from, established autism organizatons.

Early discussion focused on widespread 'professional' emphasis of negative characteristics in autistic individuals, especially the image of 'doom' impressed upon parents at diagnosis. In an effort to promote balanced discussion and consideration, The Autism Project proposed to emphasize strengths rather than weaknesses, and to promote a single, inclusive 'autism community'.

In 2001 The Autism Project included at least nominal representation from Asperger's Society of Ontario, Autism (Society) Ontario, Beaches Community Support Group, Geneva Centre for Autism, and The Hospital for Sick Children, together with equal representation by indepenedent autistic adults. The course throughout 2003 (and early 2004) would confirm the general and organized commitment to exclusion or coercion of autistic adults by the autism community.


Unable to move its local success into province-wide cooperation (including equal representation at the board level), the partnership dissolved in early 2004.


© The Autism Project, Ontario 1998-2006
January 1, 2001 | June 8, 2008