April 2 is World Autism Awareness Day and one of the initiatives that have marked this day is the three year-old Light It Up Blue Movement of Autism Speaks. With new cases of autism being diagnosed everyday and incidence rates now standing at 1 in 88 kids in the US, surely we’ve gone past beyond simple awareness. How many kids will it take for people to start realizing that this will not go away? That beyond feel-good movements and short-term PR projects, we must press our governments, our health officials, and our teachers to work hand-in-hand with families and come up with comprehensive action programs?
Today, we must start moving, There is no time to lose. Our kids are growing fast. Their numbers are rising even faster. Changing labels and diagnostic criteria will not change the reality that this growing segment of the population- and their families- will continue to require assistance, and if such were not possible in view of third world governments’ priorities, then at least some tangible guidance.
In this part of the world, we join the millions of those who love and live with individuals with autism. Our son may not have his own voice, but he has ours.
We are Team Alphonse.