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New Autism Awareness Push in Natural State

LITTLE ROCK, AR-- An alarming spike in the number of children dealing with autism nationwide and in Arkansas is causing concern, and renewing a push for autism awareness in the Natural State.
LITTLE ROCK, AR-- An alarming spike in the number of children dealing with autism nationwide and in Arkansas is causing concern, and renewing a push for autism awareness in the Natural State. The latest CDC report reveals a whopping 55% increase in the Natural State since the last study done in 2002. The latest numbers show that one in 65 children is affected. This estimate is based on health and educational records in 11 states including Arkansas. Now, a day after that report, Arkansas is doing more to raise autism awareness. Families affected by the disorder, gathered on the steps of the state capitol on Friday. They were there as Governor Mike Beebe signed a proclamation making April Autism Awarenss Month. He also made April 2nd Autism Awareness Day. "Awareness is key," says Cecil Ennett. "As far as research dollars, donors dollars, being able to work with the school system so we can identify and get the proper services for these children." One way of assisting children who are autistic is through a new program to the state called the 'autism waiver'. It's an early intervention program that is free for many families. It takes three years to complete and children must be enrolled in it by the age of seven. Talk to your pediatrician or your child's school for more information.

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