Comments ‘likely to cause upset’

The Psychological Society of Ireland (PSI) has described as “unhelpful and likely to cause upset” comments by clinical psychologist Tony Humphreys that inferred parents of children with autism were to blame for their child’s condition.

Mr Humphreys made the comments in an article published in this newspaper a week ago. They have been criticised both by fellow experts and parents of children who have the condition.

“It is grossly inaccurate and demonstrated a clear ignorance of the most basic understanding of autism and autism spectrum disorders (ASD),” said Brigid Sinnott, manager of ABA and Autism Services in St Catherine’s Association.

Dr Humphreys has since said parents were “never to blame” for autism and his intention was simply “to inform and enlighten”.

PSI president Michael Drumm said: “Tony Humphreys’ assertions are not supported by the vast body of published research in the field of ASDs and are unhelpful and likely to cause upset.”

Irish Examiner editor Tim Vaughan, in an editorial earlier this week, apologised for the hurt caused by Dr Humphreys’ comments.

“His comments have caused enormous upset for many parents and relatives of children with autism and I very much regret and am sorry for this,” said Mr Vaughan last night.

© Irish Examiner Ltd. All rights reserved

Email Updates

Receive our lunchtime briefing straight to your inbox

More in this Section

Judges warn of ‘flaws’ in judicial reform

Half of sexual violence centre’s clients did not report incident to gardaí

Couple separated for first time in 63 years of marriage

Man burnt neighbour’s van over spying fears


Breaking Stories

Coveney confident ’heavy lifting’ on restoring northern institutions will will be done by tomorrow

Husband of missing Tina Satchwell, 45, makes emotional Crimecall appeal

Pedestrian killed in Dublin tonight after being struck by truck

Council vote to green light redevelopment of protected warehouses in Cork

Lifestyle

Inistearaght: The Blasket that looks like a Skellig

Meet the woman turning the oceans’ trash into photographic gold

20 years later, people are still spellbound by Harry Potter

A passion for Harry Potter - the books that taught a generation about friendship, courage and learning

More From The Irish Examiner