Autism Ontario (legally incorporated as Autism Society Ontario) is a charitable organization with a history of over 49 years representing the thousands of people on the autism spectrum and their families across Ontario. Made up of knowledgeable parents, professionals, and autistic self-advocates who can speak to the key issues that impact autistic individuals and their families, Autism Ontario is the province’s leading source of information and referral on autism, and one of the largest collective voices representing the autism community. There are seven regions across the province of Ontario.
The work we do helps all autistic individuals and families in their communities have access to meaningful supports, information, and connections so they are equitably and seamlessly supported across their life course.
Autism Ontario is guided by the board of directors, composed of parents, people on the spectrum, and respected professionals, who provide governance, expertise, and guidance to the organization on a volunteer basis.
Autism Ontario aims to support and advocate alongside all autistic individuals across the province, regardless of race, ethnicity, income, religion, sexual orientation, or gender identity.
Now more than ever, we must be active and deliberate in listening to and including all autistic voices across the province. We will continue to expand our reach to neglected segments of our community. We will work to provide spaces of support and advocacy for our Black and Indigenous communities. And we will work together to dismantle the systems of oppression that prevent many autistic individuals from realizing their potential and living meaningful lives.
As we do our work, we will also reflect on the systems of oppression that prevent many autistic individuals from realizing their potential and living meaningful lives.
As a registered charitable organization (Charitable no. 119248789RR0001), Autism Ontario is nonpartisan. This means the information and resources we provide and share, and the opinions we hold on matters related to our charitable purpose, do not endorse or criticize a specific political party, candidate, elected official, or platform.
When federal and provincial elections occur, we are often asked what we are and aren’t permitted to do. As a Canadian registered charity, we are permitted to conduct public policy dialogue and development activities connected to the legal purpose of our existence as a charity, provided they are not partisan.
As such, in our approach to advocacy and engaging in provincial and federal elections, Autism Ontario:
- DOES gather existing and/or create new, evidence-informed, autism-related information from a wide variety of sources including surveys, relevant research, and public policy documents that represent diverse views, including those of people with lived experience across Ontario.
- DOES provide a balanced analysis of party platforms or positions on issues as they relate to autism in Ontario.
- DOES NOT make partisan statements or endorse a party attempt to influence our community and supporters as to which candidate or party to support.
If you have questions about our charitable status or what it means for Autism Ontario to be nonpartisan, please connect with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Autism Ontario provincial office is located in Toronto, which is on the traditional territory of many nations including the Mississaugas of the Credit, the Anishnabeg, the Chippewa, the Haudenosaunee, and the Wendat peoples and is now home to many diverse First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples. Toronto is covered by Treaty 13 signed with the Mississaugas of the Credit, and the Williams Treaties signed with multiple Mississaugas and Chippewa bands.
We recognize, however, that our staff, volunteers, members, and the wider community are located all over the province, on different Treaty lands. It is important to recognize that wherever we are in Ontario, we are located on the traditional territory of Indigenous peoples dating back time immemorial, and we want to show our respect for their contributions and recognize the role of treaty making in what some of us know as Ontario, still shared land, based on treaty.
Although hundreds of years have passed since the first treaties were signed, they are still relevant today. Perhaps now more than ever, it’s important to recognize the significance of these connections. We are grateful to have the opportunity to live and work on this land, and by doing so, give our respect to its first inhabitants.
We invite you to take a moment to make a personal connection to the land where you’re visiting our website from today, and recognize the contributions of the Indigenous peoples in your location.
Here is a resource to learn about the territories we live and work on: https://native-land.ca
On the National Day of Truth and Reconciliation, we remember and commemorate those who have experienced residential schools. We honour the healing journeys of survivors, their families and communities and uphold our commitment to the ongoing process of reconciliation. We are hopeful that this will allow for meaningful dialogue surrounding the impacts and legacy residential schools have left behind while honouring the strengths and contributions of Indigenous communities nationwide.
Learn more about the National Day of Truth and Reconciliation:
- Orange Shirt Society: www.orangeshirtday.org
- National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation: https://nctr.ca
- The Gord Downie & Chanie Wenjack Fund: https://downiewenjack.ca/a-day-to-listen
- The National Residential School Crisis Line: 1-866-925-4419