On World Autism Awareness Day (2 April), Autism-Europe launched a long-running awareness campaign around the theme ‘Respect, Acceptance, Inclusion’. The objective of the campaign is to challenge people to better understand what it is like to live with autism, providing a platform to shift the focus from mere “awareness” to “acceptance” of autism. This reasoning is equally central to the calls for action in Autism-Europe’s campaign manifesto.
A wide range of stakeholders and public figures as well as people from the world of sport have already participated in the campaign. Personalities such us the players of FC Bayern München and Club Atlético de Madrid, members of the Romanian Winter Paralympic team or the First Lady of Malta, Michelle Muscat, publicly supported this campaign. People are invited to raise awareness on social media over the course of the campaign (which runs until September 2016) by symbolically passing a relay baton to promote greater inclusion and participation of people with autism in society.
This call for action is also extended to decisions-makers, underlining the need to foster inclusive policies and promote the respect of the rights of people with autism. As such the European Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs, Skills and Labour Mobility, Marianne Thyssen, as well as various Members of the European Parliament, have also joined us in passing the baton for autism.