Visiting Professor Forced To Leave Canada Because of Autism

Filed Under (Activism) by Estee on 25-03-2012

Visiting Professor Jeffery Niehaus is being forced to leave Canada due to his autistic son. Autism is at fault for being “medically ineligible,” and his son is a “burden” on our system.

This happens because we do not emphasize the value and rights of the autistic person in our society. As a parent, I’m infuriated that autistic people, and their families are rejected. We are exiled and isolated members of our society. Our children are challenges because we do not try and understand them. The one puzzle I find truly puzzling is how we continue to let this happen and why we always blame the autistic person. I’m currently writing a piece on how I have to work on myself; how I am the puzzle. Perhaps more of us typical folks need to not just work on this every day, but bring it to the attention of our politicians (although I did once to Jim Flaherty and he walked away from me as soon as I mentioned the word autism).

This is not autism’s fault, it’s ours. When one family is turned away, we all are.


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About Me


I’m a PhD candidate at York University, Critical Disability Studies, with a multi-disciplinary background in the arts as a curator and writer. I am the Founder of The Autism Acceptance Project (, and an enamoured mother of my only son who lives with the autism label. I like to write about our journey, critical issues regarding autism in the area of human rights, law, and social justice, as well as reflexive practices in (auto)ethnographic writing about autism.