In order for advocacy of ADHD to be effective, the voices of those impacted by the disorder need to be heard. Myths and misinformation have been prominent in the media and in the community at large for too many years, despite abundant medical information backed by research. The misunderstanding and stigma surrounding ADHD continues to impact families affected by ADHD, causing stress, confusion, under diagnosis and under treatment. This continuing stigma has resulted in most families remaining quiet about the significant impact of ADHD on their lives.
When their constituents remain silent on the issues surrounding ADHD, politicians and decision makers see no need to make any changes or even consider the impact of ADHD. When they are informed about existing needs though advocacy work they are uninterested because they think their constituents are uninterested.
If you have an interest in ADHD, CADDAC and other Canadian ADHD support organizations need your help! Advocacy efforts cannot succeed unless the voices of those like you are heard – we need all those with an interest in ADHD: parents, grandparents, adults with ADHD, extended family members, educators and medical professionals to do at least one thing to add their voice to the effort.
Please access the information below to find out how you can help.
ADHD Advocacy: CADDAC’s Role and Your Role
CADDAC’s goals in advocating for those affected by ADHD, why we can’t do it alone, your role in advocating, what is system advocacy and why we need to advocate for ADHD.
What is ADHD Advocacy?
Without the voice of people impacted by and interested in ADHD, we cannot hope to effect change! For more information on individual and systemic advocacy, why we need to advocate and learn how you can be an effective advocate
Who to Advocate To
Who you advocate to on ADHD depends on the issue you are involved with. Does your issue fall within federal, provincial or local jurisdiction, or some combination? For example, a school-related issue may require you advocating to both your provincial representative and your school board representative.
Advocating to the media and public through Letters to the Editor
Advocacy can go beyond government representatives. Speaking out on issues of concern through initiatives such as letters to the editor can be very useful.
Tips for Advocacy Success
Know your key facts, the issues and exactly what your “ask”. CADDAC can assist you with key messages – short points that persuasively explain the most important elements of your issue in simple language.
Writing a Letter
Writing a letter to your MP, MPP, MLA or MNA, Minister or editor of a local newspaper expressing your interest in ADHD, your concerns, and your requests is hugely helpful in ADHD advocacy efforts. When meeting with government representatives we are frequently told that they do not hear from their constituents on this topic and are therefore not overly interested in becoming involved.
Meeting with Your Elected Official
Generally the best person to contact would be your provincial legislative representative especially for issues related to health and education. However, the subject of ADHD should also be of national importance so your federal MP is also an option.