Learning Disability Today published an article titled, “New landmark autism project raises concerns about reuse of DNA data,” on August 24, 2021.
The focus was on the new research project in the UK called Spectrum 10K. The purpose is to collect DNA from 10,000 Autistic people for research purposes. The Spectrum 10K project is led by researchers at the Autism Research Center (ARC), the University of Cambridge, with the Wellcome Sanger Institute and UCLA.
There is incredible concern in the Autistic community about this project and its potential eugenics uses in the future. In the article, Dr. James Cusak, an Autistic CEO of the charity Autistica was quoted as being ‘delighted to support Spectrum 10K.’
#StopSpectrum10K: Support Autistics In The UK & Sign The Petition
Please sign the petition to show that you support autistic people and prevent this study from being released to the public.
I suppose the quote from an Autistica on this project is supposed to quell Autistics’ very legitimate fears about these DNA collections. Yeah, that could be it – but that’s really doubtful.
It’s more likely these quotes are being used when non-Autistic parents need to be soothed about information they have seen via the Autistic Community and have concerns.
For those parents, these organizations just point to the Autistic that is going to support their agenda, and is most likely on their payroll or getting some other form of return on investment, then call the rest of us ‘conspiracy theorists’ in an attempt to devalue and minimize our legitimate concerns about the dangers of this project.
Autistica’s support of Spectrum 10K isn’t a shock, especially when they are linked to the now defunct Interactive Autism Network (IAN).
The Interactive Autism Network (IAN) was launched in 2006, and was meant to accelerate autism research by creating a national online registry and database by connecting the ‘autism community’ with researchers.
Autism Speaks helped launch Kennedy Krieger Institute’s Interactive Autism Network and described it as: an online forum that enabled the families in the ‘autism community’ to become active participants in research and directly link with researchers across the country. IAN continues this work today with funding from the Simons Foundation.”
The ‘autism community’ is a community of mostly parents and loved ones of Autistics, medical professionals and para-professionals – and a few Autistics. The Autistic Community is comprised of Autistic people and our real allies. These are two very different communities but only the ‘autism community’ is sourced here.
IAN had three branches: IAN Rearch, IAN Community and the IAN Exchange. The community and research sites were launched on April 2, 2007. One of their main goals was to influence the direction of autism research.
The IAN was a partnership of the Kennedy Krieger Institute and the Simons Foundation, with partial funding through a Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) Award. They also received funding from Autism Speaks.
Autism Speaks: One Month After Launch, Interactive Autism Network Reports 13,000 Registered Participants Eager to Accelerate Autism Research
The Interactive Autism Network (IAN)—the first national online autism registry, spearheaded by the Kennedy Krieger Institute, and funded by a grant from Autism Speaks—has registered an unprecedented number of individuals and families living with autism.
Never before have researchers been offered access to such a large pool of family-provided data on this puzzling disorder. In only one month, IAN (www.IANproject.org) has achieved significant milestones …”
IAN has become successful in registering families largely due to the tight-knit nature of the autism community and the outpouring of support from parents. Testimonials continue to echo the great need for and tremendous potential of IAN.
Again the ‘autism community’ is sourced here and no mention of the Autistic community.
IAN partnered with SPARK to build a research community of tens of thousands of individuals with autism and their families.
SPARK participants are asked to share medical and genetic information with scientists and agree to be contacted about other research studies. The information participants share with SPARK researchers powers important new autism research that aims to advance the understanding of autism and provide meaningful information and resources to the community.
The entire U.S. autism community is invited to participate in SPARK.
So how is this related to Autistica in the UK?
Well, the IAN shut down in 2019 and left a note encouraging U.S. residents to join Spark!
IAN also linked to other organizations outside of the States.
For the UK, IAN linked to UK Autism Spectrum Database-UK (ASD-UK) and Autistica Discover Network.
So there’s that merry-go-round of autism genetic databases and related projects by autism organizations.
SFARI & Related
Autism Speaks & Related
Autistic people have fought the inclusion of ABA in therapy for us since before Autism Speaks, and other non-Autistic-led autism organizations, started lobbying legislation to get it covered by insurances and Medicaid.
ABA is a myth originally sold to parents that it would keep their Autistic child out of an institution. Today, parents are told that with early intervention therapy their child will either be less Autistic or no longer Autistic by elementary school, and can be mainstreamed in typical education classes. ABA is very expensive to pay out of pocket. Essentially, Autism Speaks has justified the big price tag up front will offset the overall burden on resources for an Autistic’s lifetime. The recommendation for this therapy is 40 hours a week for children and toddlers.
The original study that showed the success rate of ABA to be at 50% has never been replicated. In fact, the study of ABA by United States Department of Defense was denounced as a failure. Not just once, but multiple times. Simply stated: ABA doesn’t work. In study after repeated study: ABA (conversion therapy) doesn’t work.
What more recent studies do show: Autistics who experienced ABA therapy are at high risk to develop PTSD and other lifelong trauma-related conditions. Historically, the autism organizations promoting ABA as a cure or solution have silenced Autistic advocates’ opposition. ABA is also known as gay conversion therapy.
The ‘cure’ for Autistics not born yet is the prevention of birth.
The ‘cure’ is a choice to terminate a pregnancy based on ‘autism risk.’ The cure is abortion. This is the same ‘cure’ society has for Down Syndrome.
This is eugenics 2021. Instead of killing Autistics and disabled children in gas chambers or ‘mercy killings’ like in Aktion T4, it’ll happen at the doctor’s office, quietly, one Autistic baby at a time. Different approaches yes, but still eugenics and the extinction of an entire minority group of people.
Fact: You can’t cure Autistics from being Autistic.
Fact: You can’t recover an Autistic from being Autistic.
Fact: You can groom an Autistic to mask and hide their traits. Somewhat. … however, this comes at the expense of the Autistic child, promotes Autistic Burnout (this should not be confused with typical burnout, Autistic Burnout can kill Autistics), and places the Autistic child at high risk for PTSD and other lifelong trauma-related conditions.
[Note: Autism is NOT a disease, but a neurodevelopmental difference and disability.]
Fact: Vaccines Do Not Cause Autism.