April, 2014: Autism Awareness Month

WHEREAS, autism is the fastest growing developmental disability in the United States, affecting more than three million people, and is an urgent public health crisis that demands a national response; and,

WHEREAS, autism is the result of a neurological disorder that affects the normal functioning of the human brain, and can affect anyone, regardless of race, ethnicity, gender, or socioeconomic background; and,

WHEREAS, symptoms and characteristics of autism may present themselves in a variety of combinations and can result in significant lifelong impairment of an individual’s ability to learn, develop healthy interactive behaviors, and understand verbal as well as nonverbal communication; and,

WHEREAS, the effort to address autism continues, doctors, therapists, and educators can help persons with autism overcome or adjust to its challenges and provide early, accurate diagnosis and the resulting appropriate education, intervention, and therapy that are vital to future growth and development; and,

WHEREAS, ensuring that persons living with autism have access to the lifelong care and services needed to pursue the full measure of personal happiness and achieve their greatest potential; and,

WHEREAS, Michigan is honored to take part in the annual observance of Autism Awareness Month in the hope that it will lead to a better understanding of the disorder;

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Rick Snyder, governor of Michigan do hereby proclaim April 2014 as Autism Awareness Month in Michigan.