Autistic people face discrimination and prejudice in a society which expects us to understand and fit in with social rules that are not of our making. People with autism are also part of the disabled people's fightback. This section includes my work providing 'Autism in the workplace' training and information for trade union representatives, plus campaign news, and personal and political observations.
Make me a mask so that no-one can see
That the face that I'm wearing is not really me
Get me a glaze to go over my eyes
To look like I'm looking while melting inside
Fetch me some specs that can read between lines
Fit me antennae that pick up the signs
Lend me a lens that reads unwritten rules
Bless me with patience to help suffer fools
Conway Hall, London
Janine will be giving a presentation about London Underground during the day, and performing poetry in the evening.
The organisers say:
On 23rd June 2012, Steven Simpson, a gay autistic student, was verbally abused, stripped, and his body scrawled with offensive slogans. He was then doused in tanning oil and 20-year-old Jordan Sheard set fire to his crotch with a cigarette lighter. The flames engulfed his body, his attackers fleeing as neighbours tried desperately to extinguish the flames. Steven died the next day suffering 60% burns.
I will be running a workshop on Autism in the Workplace at the NASUWT South East Regional Conference at the Oxford Hotel, Oxvford.
This poem is about the murder of 18-year-old, gay, autistic student Steven Simpson - and the appalling miscarriage of justice when his killer was prosecuted.