• Stay with the group at all times – we want everyone to be safe
  • Be responsible for your own behavior
  • Use appropriate social language, behavior, and gestures within the group –  Socializing can be awkward at any age. It is difficult to discern social boundaries, and appropriate language and often can feel unnatural and cause anxieties, but please be respectful and thoughtful of all group members. If you aren’t sure if something is appropriate just ask. 
  • NO:
        • Discussion of recreational drugs
        • Sexually explicit language
        • Vulgarity or swearing
        • Hitting, kicking or pushing
  • Put all personal electronics (specifically cell phones) during group activity, unless necessary for communication
  • Try to stay more engaged and be present with the people around you and not your phone! We want everyone to be part of the group and aware of different social interactions, and when your teen is looking at his/her phone, he/she is not engaging with other people. It may take time to feel connected to the other members, but we believe it will happen if your teen is present without distractions. Not offering a phone or games as distraction from the start of the session may cut down on meltdowns later on. 
  • Respect the venue and their rules  
  • We are representatives of the Autistic community, so let’s make sure we come across as respectful and responsible. We need to take good care of the spaces we use, preventing damage to property. This not only gives us a bad reputation in the community, but we cannot be held responsible for the cost of repairing damaged property; this cost will be the responsibility of the individual (or their family). 
  • Events held at private home residences: we must be especially respectful of people’s private homes. If you open your home to any of our AU groups, it’s essentially open to the public as an all inclusive space; please take that into consideration if you are uncomfortable taking a chance for any unknown circumstances that might arise
  • Respect the personal boundaries and privacy of others 
  • Keep in mind that we have members with different abilities and difficulties and we need to be respectful of their needs, limitations, and safety.
  • Keep relationships between mentors, adults teens (and their families) professional 
  • Mentors should be supportive Autism advocates; please understand mentors are not babysitters, at least within the context of the group. Mentors are donating their time to help Autistic youths reach their fullest potential. Appreciate and treat eat other well 🙂 Don’t take advantage of each other’s kindness and generosity, and if you want to hang out with your mentor outside of the group, please make sure it is convenient for everyone involved.
  • This group is accepting of any anyone on the Autism spectrum, including those who have not been officially diagnosed; however, we are not qualified to give a diagnosis. It is up to the individual to seek a diagnosis.

We will not tolerate any discrimination of any form

  • A.U. is not affiliated with any religious, political groups or ideologies, and doesn’t discriminate against anyone on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender expression, gender identity, disability, veteran status, marital status or age – we wish to welcome all people regardless of their differences. We will not tolerate any discrimination of any form; however, we will work with each individual to help them understand and work through their differences.
  • If we have a sign somewhere that says do no enter, you are not to enter! 
  • Your child or loved one are not allowed to go outside or leave the group without parent/guardian supervision or permission, or to otherwise enter posted off-limits areas without group leader supervision or permission.
  • Inappropriate behavior
  • If inappropriate behavior is reported, A.U. will investigate the issue. We will do this confidentially and as neutrally as possible while considering all viewpoints and context. If deemed necessary, incidents may involve the Conflict Resolution Team (CRT). The CRT will decide the best plan of action.
  • We are a very accepting and non-judgmental group; however, if we decide your behavior is too inappropriate, or continues to persist after an intervention, we will ask you to leave the group for a short period of typically 3 weeks to a month. This matter will be addressed and resolved privately and confidentially. Group Director, Danny Landry, has the authority to remove any member for any reason deemed damaging to the group at any time.
  • Organizers of A.U. cannot be held liable for general safety
  • Parents and guardians remain responsible for the actions and well-being of their children and loved ones while participating in group activities. We want parents and guardians provide transportation and remain on site during group activities; if the parent or guardian leaves the premises or allows their child or loved one to carpool with someone else, the parent/guardian ultimately remains responsible for safety and well-being. Participation in any group activity is always voluntary and at your own risk – release of liability waivers need to be signed and on file prior to participating independently in any group activity, including carpooling.
  • Parents/caregivers must be responsible for their own children
  • Parents/caregivers must remain on site while group is in session, unless exception/arrangements have been established
  • Please, if you wish to leave the premises, you must make arrangements with the leadership team and/or another parent, and sign a release of liability waiver – A.U. cannot be held responsible for any incidents or accidents that may arise during any group activity. 
    • If you are your own legal guardian and you are 18 and older or come to the meetings independently, but you need more assistance or are having trouble with self-control causing risk to yourself and other members, we ask for you to come with a natural support or caregiver.
    • This group is for you just as much as it is for autistic family member or caregiver during this group it is a time for you to share with other parents, as well as a time for teens to interact with their peers. Take advantage of the resources that the other parents provide, and try to use the time to relax, take a break, and vent to people who can relate to what it’s like to be a parent of someone on the Autism spectrum. We would also appreciate it if you could use this time to coordinate and network with other parents regarding scheduling different activities for the group.  
  • Clean up – everyone must lend a helping hand! 
    • Recycle whatever we can. Some cups are reusable; we will need to wash these to reuse them again. We will inform you where the trash and recycling is so you can dispose of things in the proper way. If you have to leave early, please ask how you can help before you go. 

Thoughts from the A.U Executive Director

I want everyone to feel free to be themselves openly; no one is perfect. As the A.U Executive Director, I make mistakes all the time, so please let’s not be overly critical of ourselves and/or each other. There will be times and places to discuss different issues as they arise, but a little trust, patience, understanding and forgiveness can go a long way, being mindful of these simple guidelines. My sincere thanks to all of you! I am very excited for our group and look forward to many more meetups to come! 

— Sincerely, Daniel J. Landry