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Safety: A Concern For Individuals With Autism, Their Families

June 3, 2011

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With the growing number of those diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder in the recent years, there's more autistic children who will grow up to become independent adults--and also a need for understanding of people with Autism in the community--especially for first responders.

Dennis Debbaudt a leading authority on interactions between law enforcement and people with autism. He travels internationally speaking on the subject and has written extensively on Autism risk management.

Anita Karney is a mother, and she's President of the Heart of Texas Autism Network. Her son Jamie has Autism, and he is fascinated by security systems. She wonders that when Jamie is an adult and independent will the community understand him?

Debbaudt encourages families to make a plan ahead of time for unexpected situations.

The Waco Police Department is currently working on implementing the Take Me Home project--a registry for those with developmental disorders, including Autism. A registry will provide critical information to police about the condition of an individual. Towards the end of the summer the Waco Police Department plans to release more information on the Take Me Home project to local support groups like the Heart of Texas Autism Network. For KWBU News I'm Jacqueline Deavenport.

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