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Weekly wins plaudits after appointing ‘insightful’ autistic columnist

An autistic writer has been appointed as a columnist by a weekly newspaper to highlight issues faced by people living with the condition.

Callum Brazzo has begun writing the weekly ‘Autistic Lincs’ piece for the Lincolnshire Free Press giving readers an insight into the condition.

Since his debut column in the 6 March edition, he has written in the Spalding-based paper about implementing autistic people into everyday life and ‘fake cures’ for autism.

In letters to the Free Press, readers have described Callum as a “breath of fresh air” and “insightful”.

LFP columnist

Free Press editor Jeremy Ransome said: “The whole thing was quite a coincidence really. Callum is very proactive about autism and had featured in several stories in the Free Press and our sister paper the Spalding Guardian.

“During a news meeting one morning last month I told the team that I thought Callum had a lot of ideas and would become an important figure in the area. Later that day, I received an email from him asking if he could write a column for us.

“I requested an example and the article he wrote for me was excellent. The column is a welcome addition to the Free Press.”

Callum has progressed to writing the column after using poetry at school as a way of coping with depression, anxiety and negative experiences.

Callum said: “I am glad that my view is valued in this community and I hope to provide practical support and personal insight as well as discussing some of the issues at the forefront of the autistic and ND (neurodivergent) community, like whether you should say ‘person with autism’ or ‘autistic people’ and what these ‘cures’ are all about – again, not a disease.

“Summarily, this is an opportunity that I feel I have earned as opposed to being merely given.

“I will do my utmost best to show the world our pixels connect and although there is no playing around when it comes to taking us seriously, we all form the same, magnificent video game.”

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