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How is it that a social worker was caught committing perjury and yet no one has held her accountable? Where is the oversight of our child welfare system and juvenile courts? Where is the outrage that this is happening and American families are being unnecessarily destroyed in court proceedings that operate under a shroud of secrecy, in court proceedings in which criminal misconduct is covered up and the best interests of children are ignored?
I’m used to reading about and advocating for adults with disabilities, but today our Black and Brown youth with disabilities are increasingly targeted for police brutality and incarceration. Everybody cares about kids, so when will disabled and Black community activists focus more on stopping state violence against youth with disabilities and providing programs after the tragedy?
A lot of activists in the U.S. joke during election times or when things get hot that they will move to Canada, but Canada is no utopia and can be rough living especially for people of color with disabilities, just like the U.S. There have been several cases of police brutality against people with disabilities, especially in Toronto. I spoke with Somali-Canadian singer and activist Sulekha Ali about her autistic brother’s run-in with the police on June 3, 2015, in Ottawa.
Today, like far too many days, another unarmed Black male was killed by a white police officer who felt threatened by and most likely didn’t see the value in a Black life. It makes no difference that this child or man may have broken the law because that hasn’t been proven. It does matter that this so-called “peace officer” decided that that Black male was guilty when he saw he was Black.
While people were righteously rebelling in the streets of Ferguson, Missouri, against police terrorism, a Center for Disease Control whistleblower confirmed something that has been on the lips of conscious ghetto dwellers for decades. International peace activist Cynthia McKinney speaks on the U.S. government spreading autism through vaccinations in the Black community, on Ferguson and much more.
Having a child with autism who receives special education in public school is a challenge. It can be more difficult for parents of low income, as is my circumstance. I’ve tried different routes to navigate a very difficult and, at times, confusing system. The myriad of acronyms and policy to be familiar with are overwhelming and it can feel as if you are alone in the process – your family against your school district.
For many in the African American community, especially those who are between poverty and middle class, autism is unfamiliar. We aren’t quite sure what kind of delay that means in our children. Does it mean they are dumb? Does it mean they won’t talk ever in life? Will they be sitting in the corner for decades, fascinated by the shiny object on the ceiling? Will they have friends of their own? Will they be independent?
Jody Moore of Alameda, Calif., and her son, Xavier, have struggled for years with the academic delays and social aggression stemming from his autism diagnosis. Everything turned around, however, several months ago, when the Moores’ lives changed dramatically for the better – thanks to assistance provided by California-based international autism support non-profit Generation Rescue.
Reginald “Neli” Latson is a wrongfully convicted 19-year-old autistic young man. This case has raised concerns about how law enforcement deals with the developmentally or mentally disabled. Latson had done nothing wrong and acted completely within his rights.
With the elimination of the Calworks Stage 3 child care program, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has made it clear that he cares nothing about the struggling working families of California. Without child care, parents of over 8,000 children in the Bay Area may lose their jobs. TAKE ACTION NOW! Flood the governor’s offices with calls, faxes and email. Demand that he reverse his decision to eliminate Stage 3. Call the State Capitol at (916) 445-2841 or fax (916) 558-3160. His San Francisco office can be reached by phone at (415) 703-2218 and by fax at (415) 703-2218 or (415) 703-2803.
The diagnosis of autism, which affects a child’s ability to speak, learn and communicate with others, is on average made two years earlier in white children than Black children. In recognition of Autism Awareness Month, here are some early signs of autism to help families identify a need for early intervention and treatment.
Experiencing this enlightened age of “autism” is remarkable after having parented three autistic boys over the past 21 years. Now that autism spectrum diagnoses are estimated in one out of 100 births, all I need do is mention the word and many nod knowingly, yet physically recoil. Don’t speak about our children in hushed tones with downcast eyes or, even worse, avoid our presence altogether. Don’t worry about interacting with our children; get over your discomfort and come to see us.
According to The ARC (advocacy, respect and commitment) of California, the governor has made devastatingly destructive cuts in the support system for people with developmental disabilities and their families. Recently I received a letter from the president of the ARC, Dwight Stratton, stating that our elected legislators decided to ignore the will of the people of the state of California by decimating the Lanterman Act.