SEXUAL HEALTH PROMOTION: A Service Provider Guide for Working with Autistic Youth
Sexual Health Promotion: A Service Provider Guide for Working with Autistic Youth was developed based on findings from a consultation process (https://www.sieccan.org/ady-autisticyouth) that included an online survey with service providers, as well as focus groups and interviews with Autistic and neurodivergent1 youth (SIECCAN, 2022a, 2022b). In the context of this project, youth refers to individuals aged 29 and under.
The topics included in this guide were selected through discussions with working group members Information presented in this guide reflects up-to-date research and knowledge drawn from both scientific and grey literature. Quotes from focus groups and interviews with Autistic youth have been integrated throughout the guide to reinforce important messages with lived experience perspectives.
This guide is for any service provider in a formal position to provide sexual health information, education, and/or services to Autistic youth. This can include educators, social workers, public health professionals, community organization staff, psychologists/counsellors, nurses, caregivers/personal support workers, behavioural therapists, occupational therapists, physiotherapists, physicians, social workers, group home staff, and others.
This guide provides service providers with recommendations for adopting a neurodiversity-affirming approach to support Autistic youth and for making sexual health education and services more accessible. The guide also offers strategies for supporting Autistic youth across a wide range of sexual health topic.