The Human Rights Case Against Harmful Behaviour Modification for Autistic People 

17 February 2022, 7:00 pm – 8:15 pm CET
at the Global Disability Summit

Organised by:

This event is also part of the global project of Autistic communities, towards the ban of harmful behaviour modification techniques (Applied Behaviour Analysis, or ABA, and various forms of conversion therapies).

Techniques such as Applied Behaviour Analysis or ABA are pseudoscientific practices of trying to change an individual’s behaviour to conform to the social expectations of a particular culture using psychological and physical interventions. Various jurisdictions around the world have passed laws against LGTBQIA+ conversion therapy. However, the same underlying techniques of coercion continue to be applied to young Autistic children and other vulnerable people.

We are building on the results achieved to date, focusing on the human rights violations in countries that have ratified the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) and  the Declaration of Helsinki  that is relevant for all members of the World Medical Association’s (WMA). 

In September 2021 our submission to the Conversion Practices Prohibition Legislation Bill in Aotearoa New Zealand was well received.

Now is the time for the governments all around the world to adopt adequate protocols to protect the human rights of Autistic people, and to act and ban ABA in all its forms. There are many groups, in many different jurisdictions, working in parallel towards this goal.

You can keep informed about the global campaign towards comprehensive bans of all forms of Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) and related news on this page, where you can also sign up to our mailing list.

Target audience

  • The global disability community
  • Policy makers
  • Healthcare professionals (especially General Practitioners and Paediatricians who are involved in preliminary assessments of Autistic children)
  • Educators
  • Employers
  • Parents of Autistic children


The presentations are in English, and were provided with live captioning. An English transcript will be published in the week following the event.


  1. Tania Melnyczuk, Founder, Autistic Strategies Network, South Africa
  2. Karen Muriuki, Autistic Self Advocate, Founder of Kenyans Living with Autism and a Bridge Kenya CRPD-SDGs fellow, Kenya
  3. Kim Crawley, Cybersecurity researcher and Autistic advocate, Canada
  4. Jorn Bettin, Co-Founder, Autistic Collaboration Trust, Aotearoa

In case you have not already done so, please also sign the current petition to ask the Aotearoa New Zealand government to investigate the consequences of all forms of conversion therapy, including harmful behaviour modification therapies that target Autistic children, which are often branded as Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) or Positive Behaviour Support (PBS).

Note: all international support is welcome as well. Those who don’t reside in Aotearoa can sign the petition with postcode “0000”. This allows us to easily distinguish the level of local support from international supporters.