PEOPLE WITH AUTISM SHARE PLATFORM WITH EXPERTS AND RESEARCHERS AT AUTISM CYMRU''S THIRD INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE IN CARDIFF, APRIL 22-23, 2008|
CARDIFF, Wales: People living with autism will share a conference platform with experts and researchers from the USA, Australia, Belgium to make their voices heard.
The third Wales International Autism Conference, to be held next month, will examine where we have come from in our understanding and management of autism, where we are today, and what lies ahead for everyone involved in the worldwide autism community.
Adam Feinstein, from Autism Cymru, said, “Autism is a neurological disorder, so there is every reason to assume it has always existed, but it was not until 1943 that the first detailed description of what was called early infantile autism emerged.
“It was only in 1981 that similarities which had been identified at the same time by Hans Asperger came to the attention of the English-speaking world and the term Asperger's syndrome was coined.
“Whether Asperger's syndrome and high-functioning autism are one and the same condition remains a hotly debated issue to this day.”
Autism was, for many years, confused with childhood schizophrenia and clouded by a tendency to blame parents for the child’s condition – a belief which still lingers in some parts of the world.
Hugh Morgan, chief executive of Autism Cymru, believes Wales has the potential to act as a flagship for best practice in how countries deal with autism in the future.
He said, “If the Welsh Assembly Government’s pioneering strategic action plan for autism can develop real teeth and make a genuine impact on the autism sector, we can influence other countries to follow suit.
“We are already the first nation in the world to have such a strategy, and this autumn’s establishment of a research chair in autistic spectrum disorder (ASD) at Cardiff University’s School of Psychology will lead to the development of the Wales Autism Research Centre.”
The Wales Third International Conference on Autism takes place at Cardiff’s City Hall on April 22 and 23, 2008.
More information is available from Jennie Thomas at firstname.lastname@example.org
(Source: Western Mail, March 24, 2008)