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Lighthorse PD, OK: Police get "sensory kits" to help communicate with autistic people

Aug 24, 2023, KXII TV, Ada, OK: Chickasaw Lighthorse PD receives autism spectrum sensory kits

Through a partnership with the Autism Foundation of Oklahoma, the Chickasaw Nation Lighthorse police were provided with sensory kits, designed to help officers communicate with people on the autism spectrum.

“A lot of individuals on the autism disorder spectrum have sensory issues related to bright lights or loud noises,” Lighthorse Police Chief Chris Palmer said.

With headphones, sunglasses, a weighted lap pad, communication cards and more, each sensory kit is equipped with items that can help those on the autism spectrum to feel more comfortable and avoid a sensory overload during stressful situations….

There’s a strong personal connection to autism for Lighthorse police chief Chris Palmer, whose daughter is also diagnosed on the spectrum, “My daughter is limited in her verbal communication, so the communication cards worked out fantastic. I was able to ask questions and she was able to point to different pictures on the communication cards to identify what she needed or what she wanted at the time.” …

“This is not just a sensory kit for law enforcement, this could be used in school systems, police departments, any type of emergency response, fire department, EMS, hospitals, there’s so many areas that these kits could be used in that it would impact our community,” Chief Palmer said.

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