Young Autistic Embraces the Conference of States Parties to the UN-CRPD in New York (Click for original article in Portugese)
Posted on June 18, 2016 by admin
Fernanda Santana, autistic young member of the Embraces of Curitiba, went to New York to participate in the ninth edition of the Convention of the Conference of States Parties on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, 14-16 June 2016. Fernanda was indicated by Embraces in a partnership with Autistic Minority International by Lumos and UNICEF join the panel "Ending Violence Against Children and Adolescents with Disabilities" (End of Violence Against Children and Adolescents with Disabilities) held last June 16 in room 4 of the United Nations Building in New York.
With a strong speech, incisive in favor of human diversity and prevention of systematic violence against suffering children and young people with autism, Fernanda was standing ovation.
In this June 18, World Pride Autistic day, we at Embrace, share the beautiful and strong speech Fernanda the UN, as a warning against the various forms violence and as a call to the role exercise, acceptance and recognition of human rights .
With the word, Fernanda Santana:
Thank you, it's an honor to be here.
My name is Fernanda Santana, I am a self-supporter ( self-advocacy) Brazilian autistic, Embraces the member, the Brazilian Association for Action for the Rights of Persons with Autism. I would like to thank our partner Autistic International Minority and, of course, the Lumos and UNICEF for making it possible for me to be here today.
What I will say is, in fact, the current opinion of the entire autism community ... not doctors, not parents, but of their own autistic people. And the essence, of course, is the same for people with other disabilities as well.
I would like to start by quoting one of the general principles of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities: "respect for difference and acceptance of persons with disabilities as part of human diversity and humanity."
For us, people with autism, the keyword is neurodiversity. And we are proud to say that our neurodiversity is truly an expression of human diversity. That is our identity. Our Autism is not a disease or a mental problem, nor is it a curse, our Autism is part of who we are. And that is why the existence of a cure is not possible. Because people are what they are, and their differences are also important.
Autism may be a relatively new word, but we are here it's been a long time in the history of mankind, contributing in our way.Unfortunately, society has been cruel to us. And children are, of course, those who suffer most.
Starting with the difficulty of diagnosis, especially for girls and women with autism, who often go unnoticed. In many places it is still difficult to find doctors and other professionals who can tell you for sure if you are autistic or not. Especially if you are a girl who uses her mouth to speak. Many receive misdiagnosis and wrong treatment, and unnecessary medication. But a correct diagnosis is not a guarantee that everything will be fine.
I know it's hard for a family to realize that your child is different from what they expected. This is frustrating for sure. But if you think the worst of autism, only bad part if you think that is terrible and that autistic people can not be happy, can not live a "normal" life, can not do anything, like having a job or study or married ... well, of course it will be horrible to hear that their child is autistic.
Worldwide there are desperate families without information, without help, without any support. And because of this lack of support, they are easily fooled. They give all the money they have for the first person who promises a cure, a false-healing. And then the most bizarre things can happen. What are the "alternative therapies".
In Brazil, for example, we are fighting the MMS protocol, which is strong industrial bleach that parents give to their own autistic children to drink or force via rectum as an enema. It is so strong that corrodes the intestines to the point of them literally come out in pieces.
Recently we heard about a Chinese clinic that killed a little autistic boy making him go absurd distances, just because they think that autism was lazy. In France, for some reason, some psychiatrists wind autistic children in wet and cold towels, they call this treatment. In many countries, autistic children are being exposed to stem cell injections, for which there is no scientific justification. Some people do autistic children breathe pure oxygen chambers that can burst into flames. Others suggest chemical castration. Or chelation, which removes all metal body, including the calcium, which is very important for the organism. We also heard about brain surgeries and other horrible things. Occasionally, someone dies, but the "alternative therapies" remain.
The Convention says that "No one shall be subjected to torture or to treatment or cruel, inhuman or degrading". But that is what is happening today.
More conscious families, or those who simply do not have enough money to pay for these "alternative therapies" dangerous, seek healing through unproven and strange diets and of course, behavioral therapy, which is a polite name for brainwashing.
Children are trained to pretend they are not autistic, trained to hide his true identity, to obey without opposition. The psychological damage is a matter of time. Based therapies accordingly, as ABA also makes them more vulnerable autistic children to other forms of violence, including bullying and sexual abuse.
The overmedication is also very common, drugs and sedation of autistic children is an easy way to make them look calm and controllable. If that does not work, then there are the nursing homes and mental institutions. Or, if the family has enough money, more contemporary version, a whole complex-residence that simulates the real world and remains isolated autistic people the real community. That's it? This is protection? I think not. No consent is not based on the best interests of the child.
These children are not having their rights respected. And they will not have, not while not overcome the sensitization phase and begin to talk about acceptance and respect. That's what we need today. We need self-defense. We have to start talking about what these kids are capable, we must strengthen them, telling them that they can do it, you can decide for themselves. Even those who do not use their mouths to speak have to know that they have rights themselves on your body, your health, your life.
Society needs to know that autism is more than a few difficulties, and that is not a disease. You have to understand that autism does not need to be defeated, because when you try to do it, because also the defeat of autistic themselves, their rights, their self-confidence, self-esteem, their potential and hopes.
We need you to end violence against autistic children bringing information to the world. No information about medical treatments, but on human rights, respect and acceptance. Governments need to support families, schools need to be educated, and children need to grow your self-esteem intact and overall health.
This is the only way. The respectful way. Not just for autistic children, but for children with any disability ... that are different, of course, but never less.
Fernanda Almeida Santana
Young autistic Brazilian self-advocate, member of Embraces, in her speech at the UN on the panel "Ending Violence Against Children and Adolescents with Disabilities" in the Convention Conference of States Parties on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, 16 / 06/2016.
***** Translated from Portugese****