OVERVIEW: A statewide autism training program to ensure appropriate recognition and response techniques for handling emergency situations involving people with autism and/or developmental disabilities has been established through the enacted 2018-19 State Budget.
The NYS Office of People With Developmental Disabilities along with the NYS Office of Fire Prevention and Control, the NYS Municipal Police Training Council and the NYS Division of State Police, in consultation with the NYS Department of Health, are tasked with developing the training program and training materials. Individuals to receive the mandatory training include: firefighters (paid and volunteer), police officers (new and veteran), emergency medical personnel. Emergency medical personnel such as first responders, technicians, advanced emergency medical technicians and emergency vehicle operators will also be subject to training.
Appropriate response techniques for situations involving children and adults with autism will be created and such training may be developed as an on-line program.
BACKGROUND: According to Assemblyman Angelo Santabarbara, chair of the Assembly’s Subcommittee on Autism Spectrum Disorders and author of the legislation, 1 in 68 children are born with autism each year in the United States. He drafted the legislation to bring attention to areas that require specialized training so that professionals are more prepared to react appropriately in differing situations.
CURRENT STATE BUDGET: The enacted State budget includes $250,000 to fund the Autism Training program.
The statutory requirements are to take effect in the fall of 2018.
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