About Laurel Joss

Laurel Joss is a freelance writer with a Master’s Degree in Early Childhood Education. She worked as an RDI® Program Certified Consultant and has published articles in Autism Spectrum Quarterly and on her blog www.remediatingautism.blogspot.com. She is a mother to two children, one of whom is on the autism spectrum. You can also follow her on https://twitter.com/speaking_autism and https://www.facebook.com/speaking.autism.ca

Women With Asperger’s Share Experiences

Statistics show that males are four times more likely to receive an autism diagnosis than females. While there is strong evidence to suggest that males are more likely to develop autism, many females with ASD go diagnosed. Yesterday we reported on one British woman, Olley Edwards, who wrote a book to help other young women growing […]

Manning Apologizes for Leaking Documents: Are Autism Symptoms an Excuse?

Former U.S. Army intelligence analyst Bradley Manning apologized for leaking 750,000 secret documents to the WikiLeaks website in the hopes of receiving a lighter sentence for his espionage conviction. “I only wanted to help people, not hurt people,” he said. His sentence will be decided by Col. Denise Lind, the judge for the case, who […]

Studies Finds Link Between Autism and Cannabinoids

A new study shows that mutations associated with autism block the action of brain molecules that act on the same receptors that marijuana’s active chemical acts on. Endocannabinoids are molecules that affect memory, learning, pain, and other important processes. They share a similar chemical structure with THC, the primary psychoactive component of marijuana. Endocannabinoids naturally […]

Studies Explore Lack of Eye Contact in Autism

A study at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York sheds new light on why people with autism tend to avoid making eye contact. Lack of eye contact was thought to be a social deficit, but it could instead be the result of brain differences in processing visual stimuli. The study included 22 […]

Study Finds Human Voices Irritating to People with Autism

A recent study published in The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences found that the brains of children with autism show a disconnect between the region that processes human voices and the reward center of the brain.  This means that the sound of a human voice does not trigger pleasure for individuals with autism, […]

Farm Program a “Miracle” for Teen with Autism

Billy Nacmias is a 20 year-old man with autism from Breezy Point, Queens. When he was 16 years old, a teacher at Beach Channel High School viciously beat him, sending him into a decline. He became a recluse, refusing to leave his room, and binge eating until his weight was up to 280 pounds. His […]

House of Blooms Gives Students with Special-Needs Job Training

The holidays are here, and the students enrolled in the transition program at Lincoln-Way East High School in Frankfort, Illinois are working hard. They started growing poinsettias from rooted cuttings back in August. The students were involved in all aspects of cultivating and raising the plants, along with other activities integral to running a small […]

Bustin’ Barriers Offers Sports, Recreation to Children with Special-Needs

Bustin’ Barriers is a non-profit organization in Portland, Oregon, that offers children with special-needs the opportunity to break down hurdles through sports and enrichment activities. The program started out in 2012 as a week-long camp program teaching basketball skills to children with special needs. The program was a labor of love for Andrew Yoshihara, a […]

G.R.O.W.E.R.S. Inc. Offers Training, Employment, to Adults with Disabilities

G.R.O.W.E.R.S., Inc. is a horticultural center in Wallingford, Connecticut, that provides education, employment opportunities, and therapy for adults with physical and developmental disabilities. Their name stands for Growing Real Opportunities With Education Relationships and Stability.They are committed to providing services to individuals with a wide spectrum of needs through social learning experiences using community interaction […]

Young man with Autism appeals to Obama for access to higher education, finds own way

Billy Pagoni is a 21 year-old man with severe autism who dreams of becoming a sous chef. His parents searched for a program that could accommodate his special needs, but were unsuccessful. In April, 2012, Billy posted a video to his Facebook account to share his dilemma with President Obama. He says, “Dear President Obama, […]