ONTARIO ADULT AUTISM 
RESEARCH AND SUPPORT NETWORK 
NEWS BULLETIN


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OAARSN NEWS BULLETIN

 
7 November 2006


CALL FOR HELP

Seeking Neurologists Sensitive to Autism and Epilepsy
Families and caregivers of several adults who live with autism and occasional grand mal seizures are looking for neurologists willing to see adults with autism and, if at all possible, to consider strategies other than medication. Some adults react to drugs and some are highly sensitive to medical procedures. Please let us OAARSN know of anyone you could recommend.

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GENERAL AUTISM NEWS

Early childhood TV viewing may trigger autism, data analysis suggests
A series of data sets analyzed by economists at Cornell University and Indiana University-Purdue University suggest a connection between early childhood television viewing and the onset of autism. The authors urge further investigation and research by experts in the field. In a paper presented at a conference of the National Bureau of Economic Research, in Cambridge MA, the authors reviewed data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics' American Time Use Survey on TV viewership rates among children and compared it with data from the National Climactic Data Center, which looks at the amount of precipitation communities receive. This analysis showed that children from rainy counties watch more television. When autism rates were then compared between rainy and drier counties, the relationship between high precipitation and levels of autism was positive.

Students on the Spectrum
Because of her mother’s perseverance, Valerie Kaplan spent her last two years at Carnegie Mellon living near campus with a coach, who helped her organize her work, buy groceries, keep her room clean. “It was the answer to a prayer,” says her mother, Jan Kaplan, who watched her daughter flounder during sophomore year, trying to pick a major. Miss Kaplan eventually came home for a year. Testing led to a diagnosis of Asperger’s. The coach, Carolyn K. Hare, a former special-education teacher for autistic students, went on to create Aheadd (Achieving in Higher Education With Autism/ Developmental Disabilities), which provides services at the University of Pittsburgh and, beginning in the spring, at George Mason in Arlington, Va. This fall at Carnegie Mellon, Ms. Hare is working with seven students. Aheadd charges $7,000 a year, with some need-based scholarships available through Carnegie Mellon.


Finding jobs for autistic victims
Joe Powell (30, of Newport in Wales) thought he was a hopeless failure when he was sacked from his job with a police force for "a lack of communication. " Then he discovered he had Asperger Syndrome (a form of autism) and realised he was ill, not incompetent.
"In those days I had no diagnosis so my only conclusion was that I was hopeless and I was a failure," said Joe.
Nick Haake, NAS Cymru Manager for Newport and Neath said today: "People with autism can make a valuable addition to the work force but unfortunately many have unpleasant experiences caused by a lack of understanding and training on the part of employers. By making small adaptations to the working environment and learning more about the needs of people with disabilities, companies can make a huge difference."
Three people supported by the National Autistic Society Wales will be taking part in a conference in Newport this week to highlight issues around employment for people with autism and other disabilities, and gain valuable work experience in a major hotel chain.


Autism gets a new frame in family film
New York filmmaker Lizzie Gottlieb hopes to change stereotypes about autism with a documentary about her brother, Nicky Gottlieb, who has an autism-related disorder known as Asperger Syndrome. The 28-year-old is the star of "Today's Man," a one-hour feature which will be shown Friday at the Margaret Mead Film and Video Festival at the American Museum of Natural History. It's a loving yet unflinching look at the paradox of Asperger: Nicky can memorize whole calendars but can't hold a 9-to-5 job; he's a whiz at foreign languages but struggles to communicate with his peers.


Autism inspires a dramatic comedy

Writer/performer Ken LaZebnik says that nothing in his 30-year career has been as personal for him as "Vestibular Sense". The dramatic comedy, which opens Friday at Mixed Blood Theatre in Minneapolis, revolves around a young man affected by autism but living independently. As he crafted the story, LaZebnik looked no further than his family for his characters. He has "two close family members" on the autism spectrum -- the autism diagnosis covers a broad range of developmental disorders that affect people's communication, feelings, self-regulation and social interaction. Cases can be mild (and remain undiagnosed) to severe. One member of LaZebnik's family exhibits clear signs of the disorder, including inhibited language processing, while the other is a high-functioning high-school class representative who also plays football.


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ONTARIO NEWS


Results of the Locating Technology Project have now been made public
The project, concluded in August, was undertaken by Accessibly Yours and the School of Rehabilitation Science at McMaster University. This project was of interest to the autism community, some of whom took part as volunteers in various aspects of the research.

Read the Ministry announcement, the Project's Executive Summary, or the full report 

A tip sheet is available to help families, interested individuals and caregivers understand how locating technology may assist them in providing additional safety and security for their loved ones. The tip sheet points out some of the issues related to the use of locating technology including ethical considerations such as privacy. 

The ministry announces that it is also looking into expanding current funding guidelines to include locating technology devices as an approved support tool for families to purchase where the use of such a device is expected to aid the individual’s personal growth and development. If you need more information on this point, please contact the Developmental Services Branch


LONG-TERM CARE HOME
ACCESS PROTOCOL
FOR ADULTS WITH A DEVELOPMENTAL DISABILITY
Disability advocates have been upset to learn that the Ontario Government (through the Ministries of Community and Social Services and Health and Long-Term Care) has made plans for adults with a developmental disability and relatively high needs to be admitted to long-term care facilities instead of opening community living opportunities for them. Advovates of inclusion and community living see a discrepancy between this new "access protocol" and the values and strategies discussed in the MCSS "transformation process" for developmental services since mid-2004.
Read the Ministries' Access Protocol (July 2006)
Read a letter of serious concerns by Shelley Martel MPP

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SPECIAL PROJECTS


AUTISM / ASPERGER'S SURVEY
Dr Jeffrey Rudski, Muhlenberg College, Allentown PA offers a survey examining knowledge and attitudes relating to Aspergers and autism.  What is unique about this project is that the items were generated from comments and suggestions by adults with Aspergers. The survey consists of 71 items relating to Aspergers/autism, followed by 20 questions about your background. They are hoping for responses from people with the diagnosis, as well as parents, siblings, children, relatives, acquaintances, friends, co-workers, students, teachers, professionals, etc, and anybody who has heard of autism and the autistic spectrum.
Click for survey: 
http://FreeOnlineSurveys.com/rendersurvey.asp?sid=vmve9sgoh89brwx228138
Contact: rudski@muhlenberg.edu


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ANNOUNCEMENTS OF EVENTS

Please send submissions for this news bulletin or for the OAARSN Calendar and Bulletin Board in plain text format by email to ebloomfi@uoguelph.ca with "announcement" at the beginning of the subject line.
Please provide details of the following as BRIEFLY as possible: 
 Name of Event
 Main Speakers and Topics of Event 
 Date of Event 
 City and Location of Event
 Contact information to learn more about event
 URL Link for more information/registration 

 Please Do Not Send Files Or Brochure Attachments


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November 7-9, 2006
3rd Annual “Passport to Community Participation” Conference
at Horseshoe Valley Resort in Barrie, Ontario
Click for full details

November 8-11, 2006, in Baltimore
TASH CONFERENCE: Living the Vision Together: Today, Tomorrow and Beyond
Conference Highlights
  • Keynote Speakers include - Jonathan Mooney, Ann Turnball, DJ and Ursula Markey and Zach Bryant, 14-year-old 8th grade student, Maryland
  • Featuring over 350 breakout sessions, exhibits, roundtable discussions, poster sessions and more
  • Special features include TASH TECH Workshops on restraint elimination, inclusive education, influencing teaching and learning, autism spectrum disorders, lifestyle issues, distance education, self advocates and more.
  • Highlighting Saturday Institutes on inclusive education, positive behavior support, social and recreation life and more.
  • Complete conference registration and hotel information is available on website at www.tash.org

November 11, 2006, 9:30 to noon, in Kitchener
Personal Support Networks: From Concept to Reality

Sponsored by Planned Lifetime Networks
Place: Extend-A-Family, 91 Moore Ave

Marnie Matthews, PLN Co-ordinator, will provide an overview of the concept, and two family groups will talk about their real-life experiences.
Please register by calling 1-519-746-1188 or email <plnwwo@sympatico.ca>



Tuesday, November 14, 2006: from 7:30pm
Autism Support Group: a free service of Autism Ontario - Durham Region
meets at
7:30 p.m. on the 2nd Tuesday of every month
21980 Highway 12, Uxbridge - Precious Minds Resource and Learning Centre
north of Greenbank on the south-west corner of Blue Mountain Road and Hwy 12, just north of the Skye Motel
For more information, call toll free 1-866-495-4680
or e-mail autismdurham@Gmail.com

Anyone who has an interest in autism is welcome to attend

Visit our website: www.autismontario.com/durham
For the times and locations of all of our autism support groups, click here: http://www.autismontario.com/client/aso/ao.nsf/Durham/Support+Groups?OpenDocument
This is one of 3 free autism support groups in the region operated by Autism Ontario - Durham Region. The above group has been established in this specific area in order to better serve our community members living in north Durham, including Uxbridge, Brock, and Scugog.


Wednesday, November 15, 2006
: from 7:30pm
Autism Support Group: a free service of Autism Ontario - Durham Region
1450 Hopkins Street, Unit 105, Whitby at BCTS Inc.
For more information, call toll free 1-866-495-4680
or e-mail autismdurham@Gmail.com



November 19, 2006, all day, in Newmarket
Families for a Secure Future AGM
Making Dreams Possible with Rebecca Beayni
Click for full details and to register

Friday, December 8th, 2006, 9:30 – 3:30
ADULTS WITH AUTISM SPECTRUM DISORDERS, MENTAL HEALTH & BEHAVIOURAL ISSUES
Presented by J. Dale Munro, MSW, RSW, FAAMR, Clinical Supervisor; Dr. Lillian Burke, Ph.D., C. Psych, psychologist, of Regional Support Associates
Location: Elmhurst Inn, Ingersoll
Cost: $45

To register for RSA workshops or training please contact:
Jayne Joyes - Administrative Assistant   (519) 421-4248
Toll Free: 1-800-640-4108  Fax: 421-4249
or email Jayne Joyes at: jjoyes@wgh.on.ca


Advance Notices:

8-10 February 2007, in Herning, Denmark

Welcome to Meeting of Minds 2 - A conference on autism and related disorders

Social Cognition and Emotion in Autism and Related Disorders - A Multidimensional Approach - Research and Practice
Keynote speakers include
Daniel Stern, Uta Frith, Simon Baron-Cohen, Peter Hobson, Paul Harris, Stephen von Tetzchner, Hans-Christoph Steinhausen, Anthony Wigram
For more details, visit: http://www.meetingofminds2.dk/


May 23 – 27, 2007, Sheraton Centre Toronto

2nd International Come To Your Senses Conference

Opening the Sensory World to Children & Adults with Complex Disabilities

By MukiBaum Treatment Centres

Call for Papers NOW OPEN!

We invite professionals, parents, caregivers, persons with disabilities, researchers and consumers to present on a wide array of topics within the realm of Sensory-Motor Therapy and people with disabilities.  The goal is to share and disseminate knowledge and experience from around the world so that we can better understand the Sensory Reality of people with disabilities and the many forms of treatment that exist. 

If you are interested in presenting at our conference, visit the website at www.mukibaum.com and click on the link for Submit Paper. The complete details and rules for submission are outlined on the website.

Registration is now at http://www.sensoryconference.ca/ and you can take advantage of Early Bird rates.  There will be opportunities for you and your organization to exhibit, become a sponsor of the event and participate in a number of activities throughout the conference.



June 15 & 16, 2007

2007 Autism Spectrum Disorders Conference
Acceptance and Opportunities: See the Potential

A conference that will explore best practices and approaches for increasing quality of life, opportunities and independence. Save the Date! Friday, June 15 & Saturday, June 16, 2007 Toronto, Ontario
Member and Early Bird Registration discounts are available.
Keep an eye on www.autismontario.com for more information to be released in the coming months.

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FROM THE FRONT LINES: 
CALLING FOR HELP AND SHARING PERCEPTIONS AND EXPERIENCES

News about adults with autism is usually negative. We receive many appeals for advice on where to turn for help--with diagnosis and assessment, advocacy, planning for the future, alternatives to approaches that are not working. There are virtually no obvious sources of help for isolated adults with autism and their caregivers.

We know that some adults and their families and caregivers are heroically using what resources they have to achieve some successes with their challenges. Some can report remarkable progress. We invite you, as an adult or caregiver living with autism, to share your perceptions, problems and success stories, if you think others might help or benefit.

If you wish, we will not print your name or email address. You may send a message to ebloomfi@uoguelph.ca for OAARSN. Or you might use the OAARSN Discussion Board, reached by pressing the Communication bar on our main page



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