Autistic UK is an Autistic People's Organisation (an APO), an organisation
run by autistic people.
Autistic UK campaigns throughout the UK and elsewhere to advance the
interests of all autistic people and those with "related
Autistic UK Mission Statement
UK will work to;
encourage the establishment of Autistic People's Organisations (APOs)
in every local authority area in the UK
encourage autistic people to have a voice, to
"speak up" and to
encourage and support autistic people to develop the skills needed
to be able to represent themselves
ensure that autistic people are given the opportunity to be involved
in developing services locally, regionally and sub-regionally as
well as at a national level
ensure that the parents, the siblings, the spouses and the children
of autistic people are given the same opportunity as well as other
family members, friends and supporters, paid and unpaid
ensure that the civil and human rights of autistic people are
understood and upheld
improve services, facilities and conditions for autistic people.
increase the understanding of autistic people and their differences
and needs with the general public
raise awareness within the voluntary and statutory sectors as to
what it means to be autistic
promote the positive as well as the negative aspects of being
forge positive working relationships with parent-carer groups and
other autism-related organisations across the UK and beyond
estabish links with and to seek to influence academics and academia
ensure that the autistic population of the UK is empowered and is
composed of happy, healthy, fulfilled and empowered individuals
Autistic UK Vision Statement
Autistic UK envisages;
establishment of Autistic People"s Organisations (APOs) within every
local authority area in the UK
these autonomous, independent APOs to come together to form a
network covering the whole of the UK
establishment of regional and sub-regional APOs as needed
membership figure which reflects the autistic population of the UK
(There are 600,000 or more autistic citizens in the UK)
Autistic citizens being given the opportunity to be involved in the
decision-making processes which directly affect their lives at all
levels; local, regional and national
Every local authority area having;
appropriate services for all autistic people
reasonable adjustments required to enable all autistic people to
access mainstream services
opportunity of social inclusion and independent living for all
clear diagnostic pathways leading to appropriate post-diagnostic
support, appropriate medical treatment and appropriate social care
Autistic UK encourages autistic people to come together so as:
better understand each other
better understand what is meant by being "autistic"
campaign together for their rights to be recognised and upheld
campaign for the autism-specific services needed
campaign for the "reasonable adjustments" required for us to access
campaign for the recognition of our access needs and for these needs
to be met so that the world is made a more autism-friendly place
form a consensus as to what it means to be autistic
Autistic UK will participate in efforts to establish European and global
networks of Autistic People's Organisations.
Autistic UK would like to help solve the "problems of autism" and begin to
celebrate the autistic experience.
Autistic UK Values Statement
Autistic UK believes in the central principle of the Madrid Declaration;
"nothing about disabled people without disabled people" and seeks to
ensure that autistic voices are heard.
It seeks to include as broad a range of autistic people as possible.
It seeks to challenge the consensus view of the meaning of the word
It seeks to encourage the emergence of a consensus view on the
nature of the autistic experience within the autistic population of
Autistic UK believes autism is not something a person "has" any more than
a person "has Englishness" or "has heterosexuality".
It does not seek to answer the question, "What is autism?"
It seeks to ask the question, "What does it mean to be autistic?"
It applies the social model of disability to autism arguing that
autistic people are disadvantaged because society disadvantages
them, not because they "are autistic".
It challenges the various myths and falsehoods regularly propogated
It insists that autistic people must be invited into the discourse
regarding the nature of autism and what it means to be autistic.
Triad of Impairments as a meaningful summary of autistic
terms "high-functioning autism" and "low-functioning autism"
concept of the "autistic spectrum"
claims that autistic people "lack empathy", are "emotionally
illiterate", are socially illiterate, lack a sense of humour, lack
imagination, lack creativity
Autistic UK promotes the concept that being autistic involves difference
rather than deficit.
Autistic UK operates on the principle of inclusivity.
autistic population is an extremely heterogeneous group.
is probable that the only feature common to those people diagnosed
autistic is the fact that they are all diagnosed autistic.
argues that all those interested in addressing the various questions
surrounding the experience of being autistic ought to be involved in
that conversation (including those whose views are sharply divergent
with those of Autistic UK)
Autistic UK recognises that many autistic people are struggle to represent
themselves and some are incapable of representing themselves
can represent themselves without support
would benefit from support
need a high level of highly skilled support
Some, even with support, will be unable to represent themselves
last group, although they might be able to express preference and
even participate in, for example, designing their own "care
package", nonetheless will struggle to engage with a "political" or
"strategic" agenda (such as designing local services).
are aware that in some situations the most appropriate people to
speak on behalf of these people are their parents or other family
other situations it might be appropriate for these people to be
"represented" by ensuring the involvement of more able autistic
encourage family carers to represent themselves as carers.
autistic people are family carers of autistic people too.
Non-verbal or uncommunicative autistic people should always be given
"the benefit of the doubt" in terms of IQ.
The definition of a "person with a learning disability" in British
legislation follows that of the World Health Organisation; a person
with an IQ of 70 or below.
Autistic UK challenges the assumption that non-verbal or otherwise
seemingly "low-functioning" autistic people must be learning
If a person has little or no verbal communication then administering
an IQ test is problematical and determining the IQ of such people is
not a straightforward matter.
Often no attempt is made to determine the IQ of such people.
Without formal IQ testing the term “learning disabled” ought not to
be applied to anyone.
Tools with an inbuilt language bias such as the Wechsler Scales
(Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children or WISC and the Wechsler
Adult Intelligence Scale or WAIS) should not be relied upon with
autistic people non-verbal or otherwise and whatever their apparent
Tools such as the Raven Matrices should also be used in order to
obtain an accurate IQ score and to gain a better understanding of
how difficulties with language might be affecting the individual.