Coronavirus (COVID-19) Health and Safety Guide
ASERT has compiled resources for those with autism and those who care for people with autism relating to the current COVID-19 outbreak.
Individuals with autism, like other individuals with disabilities, may be considered a “vulnerable” population. Identifying when someone you support is engaging in behavior that puts him or her at risk is critical to your support role. People with disabilities, including autism, are vulnerable to developing a variety of risk behaviors. This is because they may experience cognitive differences that make differentiating risk behaviors from safe behaviors difficult. Additionally, some may have endured past trauma events, such as abuse, bullying, or discrimination that, if untreated, can lead to significant problems in mental health or misuse of drugs or alcohol. Finally, living daily with the challenges that the social-communication characteristics of autism pose can lead to low self-esteem, self-destructive behaviors, or aggression. Risk behavior is anything that places the person at increased risk of suffering a particular condition, illness, or injury. Consider the categories of risk behaviors mapped below. Make notes, if you have observed a chronic or emerging behaviors that could be described as “risk behaviors.”