UN resolution calls for additional autism services

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The United Nations General Assembly unanimously passed a resolution December 12 calling on nations around the world to take more steps to expand autism research, improve services and reduce the stigma attached with people with autism spectrum disorders.

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The resolution “encourages Member States to enhance access to appropriate support services and equal opportunities for inclusion and participation in society by providing, as appropriate, training to public administrators, service providers, carers, caregivers, families and non-professionals on the needs and rights of persons with (autism spectrum disorder), (developmental disorders) and associated disabilities.”

The resolution comes five years after the UN passed a resolution recognizing April 2 as World Autism Awareness Day.

“Over the past five years, armed with the support of the United Nations, so many countries have made meaningful improvements to the services they offer, helping innumerable families and individuals affected by autism,” said Suzanne Wright, co-founder of Autism Speaks, in a news release. “We are grateful to the Mission of Bangladesh, the State of Qatar and the resolution’s co-sponsors for supporting this global call to action that provides concrete steps to bring us closer to finding more effective treatments and a cure for autism.”