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Goal: 30,000 Progress: 13,480
Sponsored by: The Autism Site

America's cops need help. They're underfunded, stretched too thin, and dealing with deeply divided communities every day. They're asked to do so much with very little!

When law enforcement budgets get tight, the first thing to go are training programs that are considered as 'extras.' These extras can be anything that senior members of the department believe doesn't directly keep officers safe.

Autism-Interaction Training, for many departments, is often perceived as one of these 'extras.'

But that's not the right perspective. While rare in the general population, autism spectrum disorders are a reality in communities across the country. People on the spectrum are seven times more likely to come in contact with law enforcement than their nuerotypical peers. To properly do their job, law enforcement must understand how to interact with people on the spectrum, especially in the stressful or overwhelming situations that can prompt police interaction in the first place.

Many effective education programs already exist, but their implementation is piecemeal and dependent upon the funding and time being available in each department.

We can't stand back and continue to let autism-interaction training be a low-priority issue for our communities' police forces!

To help address the lack of universal training for our police on the unique circumstances the autism spectrum presents, we are calling upon the Justice Department to implement a mandatory, federally-funded education program that equips officers with the skills needed to identify and effectively interact with individuals on the autism spectrum. Sign the petition now!

Sign Here

To The Attorney General of the United States,

We are writing to you because we are concerned by the lack of universal police training when it comes to interacting with individuals on the autism spectrum.

According to the Autism Society of America, "Autism is a complex developmental disability that typically appears during the first two years of life and is the result of a neurological disorder that affects the functioning of the brain, impacting development in the areas of social interaction and communication skills. Both children and adults on the autism spectrum typically show difficulties in verbal and non-verbal communication, social interactions, and leisure or play activities."

Autism can present itself in many different ways, and people on the spectrum often respond to stressful situations differently from nuerotypical people. They are also seven times more likely to come in contact with law enforcement than their nuerotypical peers. Standard interaction protocols often are not as effective for people on the spectrum, and may even be harmful.

People on the autism spectrum are as much a part of America's communities as people of different races, ethnicities, or national background. As such, we demand that proper, universal training in interacting with people on the spectrum be required in police departments across the country, and that the federal government fund this training to ensure it occurs.

Please use your position to advocate for the autism spectrum community and help law enforcement be better prepared to interact with it. Lives are at stake.

Thank you,

Petition Signatures

Aug 21, 2017 sheryl LIKOWSKI
Aug 21, 2017 Carol Kline My son has Autism and I have seen first hand the need for training for dealing with Autistic children.
Aug 21, 2017 Gil Hackel
Aug 21, 2017 Nina Christian This is a must for the safety of our kids
Aug 21, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Aug 21, 2017 (Name not displayed) Please make it mandatory for police and fire depts tp do Autism Training lets save lives together by being aware.Thank you
Aug 20, 2017 (Name not displayed) Everyone should be trained in order to better understand the situation and better deal with the problem.
Aug 20, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Aug 20, 2017 Madelyn Caldwell
Aug 20, 2017 Lesley Baird Until all adults who are involved with autistics realize what we're up against, this will be a long battle. Universal training for police officers will help.
Aug 20, 2017 Rachael Johnson
Aug 20, 2017 (Name not displayed) With so many autistic folks in the community, it is imperative that the police have training in this issue.
Aug 20, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Aug 20, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Aug 20, 2017 Tim Stuart Much needed training for all Officers!
Aug 20, 2017 Adrienne 6
Aug 20, 2017 Laura Stuart My son and Husband have autism and they are the most important people in my life they deserve fair treatment from law enforcement.
Aug 20, 2017 (Name not displayed) Please include children with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome ! This is a huge problem largely undiagnosed. Thank you.
Aug 20, 2017 Luanne Helms This topic is near and dear to me, and is important for responders, and citizen safety.
Aug 20, 2017 Jennifer Rubin
Aug 20, 2017 Heidi Smidt
Aug 20, 2017 Nancy Gray
Aug 20, 2017 Jesusita Countee
Aug 20, 2017 Catherine clark
Aug 20, 2017 Kyla Morris
Aug 20, 2017 Christy Resusta
Aug 20, 2017 Tynesia Gibson This is a great cause,I hope people take it seriously.
Aug 20, 2017 Lynnette Rice
Aug 20, 2017 Brenda Bowling-Morrow
Aug 20, 2017 Natalie Anderson
Aug 20, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Aug 20, 2017 Angela Fennessy
Aug 20, 2017 Andrea Howard
Aug 20, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Aug 20, 2017 Mary Suggs
Aug 20, 2017 Cristina Ortiz
Aug 19, 2017 Roxanne Lester This should be mandatory training for ALL first responders!
Aug 19, 2017 Teberih Kiflay
Aug 19, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Aug 19, 2017 Kia Benz
Aug 19, 2017 Shayla Stutzman
Aug 19, 2017 Leo Gould Make sure that people who are suppose to be teaching them are checked out too.!! There must have been a reason why he felt threatened!!!
Aug 19, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Aug 19, 2017 Belinda Linder Yes police need this training
Aug 19, 2017 Joan Miranda
Aug 19, 2017 Evelyn Sandoval Please fund for Autism awareness for law enforcement
Aug 19, 2017 Crystal Zimmerman
Aug 19, 2017 Malissa Woods
Aug 19, 2017 Mandy Wadham
Aug 19, 2017 Krystle Faeryn My 6 year old became suicidal after being locked in a seclusion room for 4+ hours daily. He used behavior as communication. Triggers were not removed from his environment. When he hid under tables they dragged him out and he'd panic, then be punished.

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