WACS » Participants » Advice for Autistic Advocates

1) When giving feedback and views on WACS:

Don’t: Take things personally; attack people’s morality and intentions.

Don’t: Give feedback without caring about others’ feelings and state opinions with the intention of disrespecting others.

Don’t: Stop contributing relevant views and opinions because of previous unrelated incidents on WACS or other communities.

Don’t: Import personal issues from other communities and your personal life into WACS.


Do: Contribute practical solutions that others probably have not heard of.

Do: Give enough time for other participants to contribute.

Do: Facilitate and support the sharing of other participants by clarifying or adding on to their points.

Do: Be respectful of the views of other participants even if we personally disagree with them.


2) When encountering fellow autistics who disagree:

Don’t: Refuse to greet and speak to them because of personal disagreements.

Don’t: Post long emotional rants and then call it “giving feedback”.

Don’t: Condemn anything less than perfect as unacceptable.

Don’t: Keep insisting that people reply to your questions.

Don’t: Apply group pressure to try to force others into admitting that they are wrong.

Don’t: Try to stir up negative emotions to make people hate or disagree with someone.


Do: Consider the personal needs, emotions and situation of fellow autistics.

Do: Leave room for personal growth and learning when assessing the competency and efforts of fellow autistics.

Do: Accept different approaches/beliefs and find win-win solutions to work with them.

Do: Accept and appreciate imperfect efforts as part of the long journey towards competency and inclusion.


3) When seeing a lack of inclusion and support:

Don’t: Educate people about our views while ignoring their needs, emotions and situation.

Don’t: Say there is nothing we can do about our situation until mainstream society changes.

Don’t: Say we are “forced” to advocate or speak out.


Do: Reach out to all the stakeholders to understand their needs and why the status quo exists.

Do: Propose practical solutions that can be implemented immediately or soon.

Do: Take action to do projects that can start solving issues.

Do: Set a personal example of what the golden standard of inclusion should look like.


4) When mentoring fellow autistics:

Don’t: Encourage them to follow controversial and divisive role models likely to be detrimental to their life situation and well-being.

Don’t: Encourage them to follow their dreams/passions unconditionally even when these conflict with their life situation and well-being.

Don’t: Tell them that obtaining formal education/qualifications automatically grants credibility.

Don’t: Take pride in on-going challenges such as the inability to adapt to the local job market.


Do: Advise suitable solutions and developmentally appropriate role models for mentees.

Do: Be a good role model for how to create change effectively.

Do: Be a good role model for how to handle situations in an emotionally mature manner.

Do: Be a good role model to demonstrate how we can be adaptable even in a tough and disadvantageous situation.