Letter to the Editor, 15thJune 2018
Aspergers Victoria, like all Victorians, is shocked to hear about the murder of Eurydice Dixon in Melbourne this week.
However, we are very disappointed with the media’s reporting that suggests that the alleged perpetrator has Autism, alluding that this is related to his abhorrent behaviour. We urge the media to take care in highlighting or sensationalising the alleged perpetrators possible Autism as a sole cause of this. This case is also still sub-judice and we do not have the full facts.
Furthermore the references to Autism being a mental illness is incorrect and so disappointing given Autism is estimated to be evident in at least 1 in 100 in our population and 1:45 in USA.
Autistics are at an increased risk of misunderstanding, exclusion and social isolation due to misunderstanding and intolerance of difference. This reporting further damages community understanding of Autism.
Autism is simply a neurological difference, which creates challenges for the individual but also contributes significant strengths that should be appreciated.
The crime is not to do with the alleged offender possibly being autistic of itself. In fact, conversely, autistic people are far more likely to be the victims of crime and violence. In addition Autistic people have a proven lower likelihood of committing violent crime.
The members and Board of Aspergers Victoria express their sincerest condolences to Eurydice Dixon's family and friends.
Aspergers Victoria Inc.