Republican debate’s spotlight on autism helps raise awareness
By Miranda Christian.
OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) – Republican candidate Donald Trump highlighted the autism and vaccine issue at the Republican debate Wednesday night. Trump suggested that vaccines can cause autism.
Coincidentally, the next day was “The Big Give for Autism” fundraiser, held by the Autism Society of America.
The Nebraska chapter’s vice president Wendy Hamilton said that when the topic of autism appears in the national spotlight, they try to look at the positive side.
“Any publicity is good publicity. I would hope that with the conversation being made so public, people take an opportunity to say, ‘Wait a second, I think I want to look into that a little bit more,’” said Hamilton.
The vaccine debate has been around for years and Trump is bringing it back to the forefront.
“I am not here to tell people what to believe or not to believe, except educate yourself,” said Hamilton
Autism being discussed during the debate could not have come at a better time for ASA. A national all-day, online fundraiser would take place Thursday. The money raised will help the 21,000 Nebraskans who are diagnosed with autism.
“I think anytime it is brought up in conversation is good, the timing couldn’t have been more perfect for us giving we are doing a major fundraiser, so for that, we say thanks,” said Hamilton.
September 17, 2015
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As the nation’s oldest and largest grassroots organization founded to help all affected by autism, the Autism Society is IN communities, working FOR communities and collaborating WITH communities to make life better for those with autism.
For Fifty years the Autism Society has provided support to people on the autism spectrum, their families, caregivers, friends and loved ones. Consider how life with autism looked before the Autism Society was founded:
- Approximately one in four young adults with autism was socially isolated.
- Four in every 10 young adults on the autism spectrum never worked for pay between high school and their early 20s. Those who got jobs tended to work part-time in low-wage jobs.
- Approximately 26% of young adults on the autism spectrum received no services – services which could help them become employed, continue their education or live more independently.
- Over half of young adults with autism received no vocational or life skills services during their early 20s.
- Nearly 37% of young adults with autism were disconnected from both work and education after high school.
Through over 100 local affiliates, and with the help of partnering organizations, the Autism Society is uniquely positioned to reach a nationwide audience giving all those affected by autism an equal voice in things that impact their lives.
Right now you can stand with the Autism Society by getting involved in The Big Give for Autism– our biggest one-day giving campaign ever – using the hashtag #AutismBigGive.
When you support The Big Give for Autism (#AutismBigGive) you allow the Autism Society to:
- Promote early identification and access to effective treatments for preschool children helping to reduce lifetime care costs by two-thirds.
- Help parents, teachers, and caregivers build education and treatment programs, so that all children and adolescents can leave school prepared to reach their fullest potential.
- Ensure that every young adult or post-graduate with autism has access to services and supports that maximize independence and secure the highest quality of life.
But that’s only the beginning. Your support also enables the Autism Society to take steps to best meet the increasing needs of the growing autism community.
Currently, there are an estimated 3.5 million people in the United States living with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). With your support we can address the day-to-day issues faced by people on the spectrum, advocate for appropriate services for individuals with ASD, and provide the latest information regarding treatment, education, research and advocacy.
The Autism Society has a proud history and an even brighter future…but only if we all work together.