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Announcing our new name: Autism Alliance of Canada

Canada’s leading Autism advocacy organization rebrands to better align with the vision for a National Autism Strategy.

As we are getting closer to the development of a National Autism Strategy, the time is right to reflect on the evolution of our organization, and how we can best address the opportunities and challenges that lay ahead. To set ourselves and our members up for success, we have prepared an updated Strategic Plan to build on our momentum. This plan includes a brand refresh and maps out an exciting new direction for the organization. 

As part of this brand refresh, we recognize the need to change our name (Canadian Autism Spectrum Disorder Alliance / Alliance canadienne des troubles du spectre de l’autisme) to reflect a more holistic and strengths-based approach to autism. 

The United Nations and the World Health Organization are shifting from the deficit model of autism being a disorder, to the broader biopsychosocial model of disability which includes the use of strength-based language. Continuing to use stigmatizing language results in isolating valuable and integral members of our community. It is for this reason we are removing the words “spectrum disorder” from our name. 

At our Annual General Meeting on April 26, 2022, our organization and community members voted unanimously to ratify our new name. We are proud to announce that we are officially transitioning to the new name of: “Autism Alliance of Canada” (in English), and “Alliance canadienne de l’autisme” (in French). Over the next several months our public platforms and communications efforts will reflect this change. 

We have also updated our strategic direction, outlining how we will play a role in moving the National Autism Strategy forward as it becomes law. We invite you to view our strategic plan here.

We would like to thank our members for participating in the consultation process and laying the groundwork for the direction of our organization moving forward. Consulting with our members was an essential part of this process and we appreciate the time you took to review this work and share your thoughts for the next chapter in our journey together. 

We are incredibly proud of the work we have accomplished to advocate for a National Autism Strategy. As that Strategy comes together, we know we will continue to have a significant role to play in order to address other priority areas of impact within the disability sector in the years to come.