Until April 2008, all youth diagnosed as being on the autism spectrum were granted exemptions from military service. Today, following a change in the IDF’s profile system, youth with Asperger’s Syndrome may be determined to be fit for regular military service.
Initial Draft Notice
- Around the age of 17, every youth receives an initial draft notice. A draftee diagnosed as having Asperger’s may request to be examined by mental health professionals at the recruitment office before the initial draft process commences.
- As such, the following documents must be sent to the recruitment office listed on the initial draft notice:
- A written request to be examined including the draftee’s identification number and contact details.
- An up-to-date diagnosis from a psychiatrist.
- Additional written professional opinions, if relevant.
- Written opinion from the draftee’s school.
- If the draftee is unable to arrive at the recruitment office by him/herself and requires parental accompaniment, the following documentation must be sent to the recruitment office prior to arrival:
- A written request to accompany the draftee including his/her identification number and contact details.
- The draftee’s diagnosis.
- A written professional opinion from a psychiatrist, psychologist, or social worker indicating that the draftee cannot go through the process alone.
- If these documents are not sent to the recruitment office, the draftee must go through the process unaccompanied.
- It is important to understand that accompaniment of the draftee in the recruitment office will give the impression that he/she is not independent and this will impact any decision regarding capacity to serve.
- Recruitment office:
- Recruitment office information center - Phone No. 03-7388888, Ext. 7.
- Click here to view a list of the recruitment offices.
- All soldiers inducted into the IDF are required to undergo basic training in which they will receive a weapon.
- A profile of 45 does not necessarily entail the right to serve close to home, but it does obligate the soldier’s officer to allow the soldier to return home at least twice per week.
- Generally, soldiers with Asperger's are given a low psychological profile, which does not allow for higher levels of security clearance, and therefore, placement is restricted to certain positions.
- It is important to note that after the psychological profile is determined, placement is determined by the army’s human resources department, which is not aware of the recruit’s condition. It is not possible to intervene in the placement process, nor is it possible to control who will be the inductee’s commanders or fellow soldiers in basic training or in his/her unit.
- Effie, the Asperger's Association of Israel, has a program for preparation and support for young people with Asperger's Syndrome who have been approved by the IDF to serve as volunteers, for more information
- The official IDF website for inductees: “Olim al Madim”
- ALUT’s Booklet of Rights for Adults on the Autism Spectrum
- Original translation performed by The Shira Pransky Project as part of a grant from The Fellowship Fund.