Autistic Pride Day

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Autistic Pride Day, an Aspies for Freedom initiative, is a celebration of the neurodiversity of people on the autism spectrum on 18 June each year.[1][2] Autistic pride recognises the innate potential in all people, including those on the autism spectrum.

Autistic pride[edit]

The Autism Pride Flag was selected by online voting in 2015 from a series of submissions

On June 18 every year, organisations around the world celebrate Autistic Pride Day, with events around the world, to persuade neurotypicals, people not on the autism spectrum, that autistic people are unique individuals who should not be seen as cases for treatment.[1]

Autistic Pride Day was first celebrated in 2005 by Aspies for Freedom, and it quickly became a global event which is still celebrated widely online.[2] AFF modelled the celebration on the gay pride movement.[3] According to Kabie Brook, the co-founder of Autism Rights Group Highland (ARGH), "the most important thing to note about the day is that it is an autistic community event: it originated from and is still led by autistic people ourselves", i.e. it is not a day for other charities or organisations to promote themselves or stifle autistic people. The rainbow infinity symbol is used as the symbol of this day, representing "diversity with infinite variations and infinite possibilities".[2]

During gay Pride events a rainbow flag is used featuring a white infinity symbol on a tri-colour background.[4] LGBT+ autistic charity Twainbow oversaw the selection and online voting in 2015.

Autistic pride asserts that autistic people have a unique set of characteristics that provide them many rewards and challenges. Although autism is an expression of neurodiversity, some people promoting autistic pride[according to whom?] believe that some of the difficulties that they experience are as the result of societal issues. For instance, according to Gareth Nelson, campaigns to gain funding for autism related organizations promote feelings of pity.[3][5][not in citation given] Researchers and autistic activists have contributed to a shift in attitudes away from the notion that autism is a deviation from the norm that must be treated or cured, and towards the view that autism is a difference rather than a disability.[6] New Scientist magazine released an article entitled "Autistic and proud" on the first Autistic Pride Day that discussed the idea.[7]


  • 2005 Acceptance not cure — main event of 2005 was in Brasília, capital of Brazil.
  • 2006 Celebrate Neurodiversity — main events of 2006 were an Autistic Pride Summer Camp in Germany and an event at the Scienceworks Museum in Melbourne, Australia.
  • 2007 Autistics Speak. It's time to listen
  • 2008 Without a theme
  • 2009 Without a theme
  • 2010 Perspectives, not fear
  • 2011 Recognize, Respect, Include
  • 2012 No theme — main event of 2012 was in Herzliya Park, in Israel.
  • 2013 No theme — main event of 2013 was in Sacher Park, in Jerusalem, Israel.
  • 2015 No theme — main events were in Reading, UK, Hyde Park in London, UK, and Haifa, Israel.
  • 2016 No theme — main events were in Reading, UK, Hyde Park in London, UK, Manchester UK, and Ramat HaSharon, Israel.
  • 2017 No theme -- main events were in Hyde Park, London, U.k., Reading U.k., Manchester U.K. and Modiin, Israel.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Playlist: All across the autism spectrum". New York: June 18, 2013. Retrieved 2014-06-18. 
  2. ^ a b c "Autistic Pride Day celebrated on June 18". The Scottish Strategy for Autism. Retrieved 12 March 2016. 
  3. ^ a b Saner E (2007-08-07). "'It is not a disease, it is a way of life'". The Guardian. London. Archived from the original on 20 August 2007. Retrieved 2007-08-07. 
  4. ^ White, Barrett (August 17, 2016). "A Tale of Two Closets: Twainbow Aids the LGBT+ and Autistic Community". OutSmart Magazine. Retrieved 2017-02-07. 
  5. ^ Shapiro, Joseph (June 26, 2006). "Autism Movement Seeks Acceptance, Not Cures". NPR. Retrieved 2007-11-23. 
  6. ^ Baron-Cohen S (2000). "Is Asperger syndrome/high-functioning autism necessarily a disability?". Dev Psychopathol. 12 (3): 489–500. PMID 11014749. doi:10.1017/S0954579400003126. 
  7. ^ Trivedi, Bijal (18 June 2005). "Autistic and proud of it". New Scientist. London. Retrieved 2007-11-24. 

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