Recently, I have came across a news story where a five year old boy with autism was labeled a Sex Offender after he hugged a fellow classmate.
The educators labeled the activity at the beginning of the school term as “sexual activities” consisting of hugging and kissing another child on the cheek.
At that age, regardless of ability to comprehend, a child on the spectrum has no clue that this is inappropriate.
Oftentimes, there are policies or politics that cause authoritians to rush to judgement without consiering all factors in the student’s treatment, as such the “Federal Privacy Clause” is oftentime used as a silencer as a method when parents ask what the punishment is for the other students involved in a act as a cover up.
“As such in this case it was disclosed that it will go in his record for the rest of his life that he is a sex offender.” As this child and many others that have autim that function very different than any child, let alone a five year old, it can leave a parent very confused on what to do.
“Who do you turn to for help when the school will not even listen to the child’s doctor when he explains the child’s difficulties in his comprehension of simple things such as boundaries?”
If we rewinded the clock 20 years ago, there would have been MANY things I have done (that I regret) that would have caused me to fall in this category. Therefore, I thank God that I have the freedoms that I have today.
As such, I feel that it my duty to make sure that I advocate the necessity of learning what allowed and not allowed in the feeling of touch and embracing. As such, I have learned later before embracing anyone or anything of the like to ask for consent to prevent complications, therefore to prevent any compromising issues that may arise.
Lastly, an individual should have the ability to have a relationship (as they age and understand) of course as they see fit, I am always a defender of that, however, the issue of gaining consent must be stressed to the maximum capability possible.