AUTCOM is the only autism advocacy organization dedicated to "Social Justice for All Citizens with Autism" through a shared vision and a commitment to positive approaches. This non-profit organization was founded in 1990 to protect and advance the human rights and civil rights of all persons with autism, Pervasive Developmental Disorder, and related differences of communication and behavior.
AUTCOM denounces social policies of devaluation (i.e. segregation, medicalization, and aversive conditioning) and envisions communities based on the cultivation and support rather than the control of their members. To that end, they encourage its individual members and organizational partners toward self-direction and self-empowerment.
AUTCOM is comprised of family members, people with autism/PDD, caring professionals, and other friends who are committed the right to self-determination and to hearing and heeding the voices of people with autism.
AUTCOM's activities include providing information, support, networking, advocacy, a strong voice in federal legislation and policy, a newsletter, conferences and trainings, a bookstore, a variety of unique publications, and an ongoing reappraisal of fundamental research and treatment issues in the light of what people with autism themselves find meaningful and respectful.
AUTCOM is unique among many organizations in that it has intentionally sought out leadership that is representative and/or supportive of the population it serves. From its inception AUTCOM has focused on inclusion and acceptance. They have a proud history with numerous autistic presidents and vice presidents, including nonspeaking leaders who utilized facilitated communication and AAC devices.
This newsletter from AUTCOM provides a detailed history of their inclusive leadership. Please read and be inspired!