‘The public perception of autism needs to change’


This week is National Autism week and Charlie Keeble, an Autistic Conservative writes for The Enquirer about Civil Acceptance.
“It is a good opportunity to write about my activism work for autism and neurodiversity. The work that I have done in collaboration with the local Conservative association has enabled me to reach out to others show the positive aspects of living with autism.
Autism and other disabilities in general are often portrayed in the media as ‘pitied, pathetic creatures that live in hopeless and vulnerable situations’.
That is something that I feel scorned by and it makes me feel resentful. Most of these stories are created by able bodied people rather than actual autistic people.
This perception created by popular culture influenced my politics and inspired me to become an advocate for autism. I don’t just raise awareness of autism, I campaign for the acceptance of neurodiversity and their rights of self-determination in a positive and proactive way.
One example of how I do this is by telling of the great intellectuals whose intelligence may have been heightened by their autism.
There are some stories about them in my book, A Puzzle in a Tunnel, which is available on Amazon. Einstein is one of them and he had a heightened intelligence in his cognitive and logical abilities that helped him to think up the general theory of relativity.
There is a vast wealth of talent in neurodiversity, but this is not widely recognised in society.
There is a project that I am working on to collaborate with the council and the London Assembly. It is a special type of recruitment agency for neurodivergents and other disabled people.
Neurodivergents have sensory issues and difficulty interacting with people in a sociable way.
I’ve based my plan on employment methods for disabled people in the USA. They have this NGO called the National Telecommuting Institute that helps around 500 disabled people into employment every year in home-based jobs.
This will work for neurodivergents like me and it will bring several other benefits to other issues in the capital. Overcrowded public transport and toxic emissions will be reduced because there won’t be any need to drive to an office.”


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