Richardville announces Senate autism workgroup
LANSING — Sen. Randy Richardville today announced the formation of a Senate workgroup that will focus on the importance of autism awareness.
Richardville said the workgroup is scheduling several hearings throughout the state to educate the public about the effects of autism and help identify options for potential legislation.
“Autism affects thousands of Michigan children and families,” said Richardville, R-Monroe. “It’s important for the public to gain more knowledge about this disease. The legislative hearings will help lawmakers determine what can be done to help Michigan children afflicted with this condition and their families.”
Richardville was recognized by the Autism Insurance in Michigan (AIM) coalition at a news conference today at the state Capitol for his leadership on the issue.
He recently co-sponsored a resolution to recognize April as Autism Awareness Month in Michigan.
“While autism has many debilitating physical effects, it also creates financial difficulties for families struggling to identify resources to cover effective medical treatments,” Richardville said. “Research has shown that the earlier the treatments, the greater the impact they will have on a child.”
Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a neurobiological disorder that impacts an individual’s communication skills, social interaction and behavior.
Current research indicates that one out of every 110 children born today will be diagnosed with ASD. More than 1.5 million families in the United States are currently affected by it. The number of children with autism in Michigan public schools increased by more than 100 percent from 5,680 to 11,366 between 2001 and 2006.
The workgroup’s first meeting is Monday, May 24 from 2:30 to 4:30 at Eastern Michigan University’s Autism Collaborative Center located within the Fletcher School Building at 1055 Cornell Road in Ypsilanti.
Sen. Tupac A. Hunter, D-Detroit, will serve on the workgroup with Richardville.
Editor’s note: A photograph of Sen. Richardville with the award is available on the Senate Majority Photowire.
Posted: Tuesday, April 27, 2010
Print friendly version Email this page