Reflections on ‘lateral violence’ and the autistic community 

YennPurkis

I was the note-taker for my workplace’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Employee Network annual workshop last week. While I no longer work in Human Resources I still do this role as I really enjoy it and apparently my notes are good and my presence appreciated. Each year a different facilitator has led the workshop. The facilitator this year was incredible. Her thinking resonated very strongly with me. She introduced a lot of different concepts around work and life and one of these really struck me: the idea of lateral violence. 

Lateral violence – as far as I know from a two day workshop – is an experience where oppressed people who have been attacked for generations turn that oppression inwards and instead of fighting the power, fight one another. In relation to Indigenous peoples it  is apparently directly related to the experience of colonisation and happens in…

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