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NL Voluntary Autism Registry

According to the Autism Society of Newfoundland and Labrador website and VOCM (the community radio station), the ASNL and the Royal Newfoundland Constabulary are going to be cooperating on creating a voluntary autism registry. This is in an effort to prevent the sort of problems that happened when two RNC officers arrested a young man with autism five years ago, believing that he was under the influence, and didn’t let him contact his mother, who would have been able to explain his behaviour. And that kind of thing isn’t unique to Newfoundland – there have been other cases where autistics have been arrested because the police don’t realize that they’re autistic, and one of the things that tend to happen when autistics get stressed (like, say, when confronted by police who are arresting them for something that they haven’t done) is that our expressive language – AKA speech – goes down the drain. Meaning that’s it’s very difficult to tell people that they’re wrong – especially if they won’t listen. And receptive language – AKA understanding of others’ speech – can also go down in stressful situations, which means that anyone who has that happen to them wouldn’t even be able to understand what other people are telling them.

The registry will be a voluntary one, that autistics within the RNC’s jurisdiction can choose to register at, and will involve having their name on a list and getting an ID card so that police will know they are autistic and can react / respond appropriately. And because it’s voluntary, there won’t be any question of being forced to disclose oneself as autistic if one doesn’t want to.

I’m honestly looking forward to seeing where this goes, and if it will work as everyone involved hopes that it will.

🙂 tagAught

By tagÂûght

I’m in my mid-thirties. I’ve lived in Canada all my life (Toronto and St. John’s), but I’ve travelled to Florida, Massachusetts, England, Wales, Ireland, Scotland, and Costa Rica. I love airplane travel (as long as there are no noisy kids around me!). I’m proud to be Canadian (though Harper might end up changing that!).

I have ASD, aka Autism Spectrum Disorder. Strictly speaking, I’ve been diagnosed as having Aspergers, but (for Canada and the US, at least) that diagnosis is going to be melded with ASD as of May, with the publication of DSM V. Having ASD, and the job I do at the moment (see First Post), is why reading the blogs I mentioned above inspired me to start one of my own about my life in general.

Back in October, I got my driver’s license (as opposed to driving permit for learners) – after twenty years of effort and trying. A lot of thanks is due to my instructor, who has dealt with people with ASD before, and so knew how to teach me for the test (I was able to drive before, just not pass the test, due to anxiety and problems with multi-tasking).

I’m a fanatic writer of SF and Fantasy, both fanfiction and original, and I devour books as well.

I love animals, in particular cats, and I have a fascination with wolves, wild cats (including the big cats), orcas, and the physiology of cephalopods.

I love the wilderness – though I don’t really have the endurance (at the moment, at least) to go hiking or camping out.

And, rather importantly, I’m not someone who thinks about political correctness when it comes to vocabulary. I use what seems right when it seems right. That will include calling myself a person with ASD, or an Autistic, or an Aspie. I’m me; I can call myself what I want.

So, enough about me. Go read my posts – they’re more informative!

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