ARMS Guiding Principles:
- Autism Resources of the Mid-South’s efforts are focused on meaningful participation and self-determination in all aspects of life for individuals on the autism spectrum and their families.
- ARMS promotes individual, parental and guardian choice to assure that people on the autism spectrum are treated with dignity and respect.
- ARMS proactively informs, influences, guides and supports legislation that will improve the lives of all affected by autism.
- ARMS is a respected voice of the autism community and the primary source for information by providing timely, frequent, relevant and professional communication.
- ARMS works to ensure that every member is successful with support group meetings and community outings.
- ARMS advocated for multi-disciplined approaches to autism research focused on improving the quality of life for individuals across the autism spectrum and their families
- ARMS works to ensure financial self-sufficiency and growth to enable us to continue to help all those affected by autism.
The growing membership base of ARMS encompasses a broad, diverse group of parents, family members and professionals. Recognizing and respecting the diverse range of opinions, needs and desires of this group, ARMS embraces an overall philosophy that chooses to empower individuals with autism and their parents or caregivers to make choices best suited to the needs of the person with autism. Providing information and education to help in decision-making are more highly regarded at the ARMS than is advocating for one particular theory or philosophy.
Autism Resources of the Mid-South promotes the active and informed involvement of family members and the individual with Autism in the planning of individualized, appropriate services and supports. The Board of Autism Resources of the Mid-South believes that each person with autism is a unique individual. Each family and individual with autism should have the right to learn about, and then select, the options that they feel are most appropriate for the individual with autism. To the maximum extent possible, we believe that the decisions should be made by the individual with autism in the collaboration with family, guardians and caregivers.
Services should enhance and strengthen natural family and community supports for the individual with autism and the family whenever possible. The service option designed for an individual with autism should result in improved quality of life. Abusive treatment of any kind is not an option.
We firmly believe that no single type of program or service will fill the needs of every individual with autism and that each person should have access to support services. Selection of a program, service or method of treatment should be on the basis of a full assessment of each person’s abilities, needs and interests. We believe that services should be outcome based to ensure that they meet the individualized needs of a person with autism.
With appropriate education, vocational training and community living options and support systems, individuals with autism can lead dignified, productive lives in their communities and strive to reach their fullest potential.
Autism Resources of the Mid-South believes that all individuals with autism have the right to access appropriate services and supports based on their needs and desires.
(Ratified By the Board of Directors July 5,2012)