Essential FASD-informed communication

When you come into contact with individuals who have, or are suspected to have FASD, it's essential to slow down and think about how you are communicating.

The person may have very high levels of expressive language, but there are many things you may be doing or saying that simply do not make sense to an individual with FASD. Be aware that they may tell you what they think you want to hear to get out of the situation. Stressed behaviour or meltdowns resulting from communication breakdowns could be construed as wilful if you don't know they have FASD, and further unhelpful punitive justice may be applied.

This is why a high percentage of those with FASD who enter the justice system are charged with crimes they did not commit – there is no doubt that our prison system includes many in this situation. Improved recognition of the signs, symptoms, and consequences of FASD are critical to prevent miscarriages of justice.

Communication FASD-style

Our double-sided KISSSSSS (Keep it Short, Simple, Same, Slow, Specific & Show) strategy is very helpful for any front-facing professional who needs to communicate with people who have FASD.

Download it here.