Don’t Perpetuate Ableism This Halloween

Are you participating in any Halloween activities that stigmatize individuals on the spectrum? Like all holidays, there are a variety of social activities and traditions that may be exclusionary or unwelcome to autistic individuals. (See this previous post for ways to make Halloween more inclusive for autistics). However, even more disappointing are the rituals and social activities people participate in that contribute to the stigma of those on the spectrum. Some of these traditions are so entrenched in our culture that many are unaware of their damaging connotations. This article examines the playful and harmful aspects of Halloween so interested readers can ensure they are celebrating the holiday appropriately and not contributing to ableist stigmas.

Unconscious Patronization

Do you consider yourself an autism advocate? Are you advocating in ways that the autistic community would appreciate? How do you know? Reaching out to the autistic community takes a dose of humility, but that’s only the first step. To what degree and the manner in which we reach out is even more important. The basic seeds of advocacy must begin on a foundational respect for the humanity of individuals on the spectrum.

Autism and Ableism This Holiday Season

autism and ableism

It’s the time of year when many people start thinking more about others, and charitable opportunities abound. While it’s wonderful to participate in various charitable activities, it’s also a good time of year to reflect on the difference between charity and ableism and how our own holiday activities and “charitable” mindsets might be assessed within these categories, especially towards individuals on the spectrum. Many autistics are outspoken on the topic of autism and ableism, yet many parents are completely unfamiliar with the term.