Lani the Carni is more than just designer clothing, we are a family committed to the overhaul of general perceptions that our society has about neurological differences.
There has been much talk about neurological differences since the term "neurodiversity" was coined by Australian sociologist Judy Singer in the late 1990's. She herself on the autism spectrum, rejected the idea that neurodevelopmental disorders such as autism are inherently pathological and should therefore attract the socially defined medical model of disability. Instead Singer and the wider neurodiverse movement, began advocating for:
- the acceptance of autism as a variation in human functioning,
- the understanding that the autistic brain simply works differently,
- the reframing of challenges as differences, rather than as deficits, and
- the understanding that autism is a diffability and should not be viewed as a mental disorder that needs to be cured.
The term was embraced both within and beyond the autistic community and has been used to fight the stigma that has traditionally been applied to autism, promote inclusion for the neurodiverse populations in schools and workplaces and in addition to embracing them as part of the mainstream, providing the necessary supports to enable these wonderfully quirky humans to become productive contributors to society.
In her recent paper published in Scientific American, Aiyana Bailin summerises what the neurodiversity movement firmly believes in:
- "Autism and other neurological variations (learning disabilities, ADHD, etc.) may be disabilities, but they are not flaws. People with neurological differences are not broken or incomplete versions of normal people.
- Disability, no matter how profound, does not diminish personhood. People with atypical brains are fully human, with inalienable human rights, just like everyone else.
- People with disabilities can live rich, meaningful lives.
- Neurological variations are a vital part of humanity, as much as variations in size, shape, skin color and personality. None of us has the right (or the wisdom) to try and improve upon our species by deciding which characteristics to keep and which to discard. Every person is valuable.
- Disability is a complicated thing. Often, it’s defined more by society’s expectations than by individual conditions. Not always, but often".
By flipping the focus from limitations to the endless strengths and potential of neurodiverse people, we are on a mission to educate how the creativity and value that quirkiness adds to our world, often leads to societal progression.
Many scientific and technological breakthroughs have stemmed from seeing the world differently, having different ideas, thinking outside the box and being “different”.
The commitment required to achieve in business, sport or the arts is often facilitated by the advantageous passion, creativity and hyperfocusing abilities of the neurodivergent.
At Lani the Carni we are committed to breaking the stigma of autism, adhd and other learning and motor differences and promoting inclusion and respect for those whose brains are atypical. Through advocacy and inclusion, we hope the younger generation understand they are different not less and that they are spared the misdiagnoses and mental health conditions that have, and continue to, plague the generations above simply because society viewed them as disabled. This shift requires everyone to challenge long held assumptions about what’s normal, what’s necessary and what’s desirable for a person to live well.
This is why inclusion matters to all of us.
As part of our mission we take part in Amaze Autism’s #Hoodieup campaign each April to raise awareness and shine a positive light on people on the Autism Spectrum.
We have also collaborated with Friend in Me, an organisation dedicated to #nochildleftbehind and are excited to launch a funky sweatshirt in 2020 where all the proceeds will be donated directly to their amazing cause.
Inclusion for us is not just making a product for a set group of autistic people. It is designing a beautiful line of streetwear and dancewear for tweens and teens that incorporates sensory considerations such as no sewn-on tags, premium quality soft and stretchy fabric and simple (but funky) designs with minimal seams.