Why Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Matter in the Autism Community and Beyond
We are deeply saddened by the tragic deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery and many more before them, who have lost their lives for no reason other than for the color of their skin. It’s incredibly important to Kadiant that we have conversations and listen to individuals and communities regarding the impact of institutional racism on physical, mental and behavioral health and the impact of structural racism, social injustice, and inequity during and beyond the pandemic. We invite our community to come together in open dialogue and seek to identify solutions to these important issues.
As an organization committed to enabling people to live their absolute best lives, we will continue to focus efforts on improving health equity and outcomes for vulnerable populations. It’s essential to acknowledge that people of color are disproportionately negatively impacted and experience later autism diagnoses, misdiagnosis, and longer delays from diagnosis to accessing care (see the CDC’s 2020 Community Report on Autism).
There continue to be many people on the autism spectrum who need services and support and deserve equitable access to culturally sensitive care. Equitable evaluation and diagnosis as early as possible can help people be connected to the services they need; and as providers of care, we must continue to acknowledge these issues and try to work together to overcome them throughout the care continuum.
We have appreciated the following resources to help guide our efforts:
At Kadiant, we are passionate about creating an inclusive work and therapeutic environment that promotes and values inclusion, diversity, and equity. Together we SHINE BRIGHT.
Melissa Thompson, MS, BCBA, Ethics, Diversity, & Inclusion Committee Chair