Interpersonal Violence in Adults with Autism

What's this project about?

Researchers have demonstrated that individuals with autism are likely to experience victimization in various forms, such as bullying and sexual victimization. However, little is known about other experiences of interpersonal violence in adults with autism. In this project, we will be examining a variety of factors related to interpersonal violence in adults with autism. We want to understand the factors contributing to experiences of victimization and perpetration in this population.

How did we go about doing this project?

We used standardized assessment measures and questionnaires, with adults across Ontario over the age of 18 with autism and a comparison sample of typically developing adults in the same age range. We are asked participants to meet with a researcher for approximately an hour and a half to two hours to answer questions and fill out questionnaires.  Participants were provided with a $50 gift card. 

What will we do with our research findings?

The results of this study will provide us with an understanding of the factors that may be contributing to interpersonal violence experiences in the adult autism population. Results of this study may also have important implications in the development of safety training and curriculum development. When the study is completed, we will write an article summarizing our findings to submit to an academic journal, present the results at national and international conferences, and create a brief summary of our findings to post on this website.

What is the next step?

We have completed recruitment for this study, and are in the process of analyzing the results. We will be sending an update about what we are finding to all the participants, and plan on presenting results at upcoming scientific conferences. Stay tuned!

Publications

Fardella, M. A., Burnham Riosa, P., & Weiss, J. A. (2018). A qualitative investigation of risk and protective factors for violence victimization in adults with ASD. Disability and Society, 33(9), 1460-1481. doi: 10.1080/09687599.2018.1498320

Weiss, J. A., & Fardella, M. A. (2018). Victimization and perpetration experiences of adults with an autism. Frontiers in Psychiatry, 9, 203. doi: 10.3389/fpsyt.2018.0020

Want to know more about this project?

For more information please feel free to contact Dr. Jonathan Weiss, Principal Investigator on the study, at jonweiss@yorku.ca.


This project was supported by the Chair in Autism Spectrum Disorders Treatment and Care Research, Canadian Institutes of Health Research Frederick Banting and Charles Best Canada Graduate Scholarship