Monday, June 25, 2012

New president for Autism Speaks

I learned this weekend, by reading a post on DisabilityScoop.com, that a new president, Liz Feld, has been appointed at Autism Speaks.

Disability Scoop reported that Autism Speaks’ president, Mark Roithmayr had resigned and that prior to a June 19 press release, there had been no apparent signs of an imminent restructuring at Autism Speaks.
“When pressed, officials at the organization said Roithmayr would be staying on for another month or so during the ‘transition period,’ but refused to talk further about the shake-up. Roithmayr did not return calls seeking comment.”
I found the news interesting because, as I've previously discussed, autism self-advocates have criticized Autism Speaks for having no people with autism on its governing board.

I am offended by this organization’s portrayals of people with autism as burdens to their family and society. Its depiction in “I am Autism” of a malevolent entity that wrecks families and destroys lives ought to be viewed as hate-speech.

Disability Scoop indicated that Feld does not appear to have personal ties to the autism community. It cites Ari Ne’eman, president of the Autistic Self Advocacy Network, stating he doesn’t believe the personnel swap is likely to bring significant change.



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