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San Diego County: 4% of children have autism; due to "better job of recognizing it"

Oct 31, 2022, News Channel 3, Palm Desert, CA: Families with autistic children enjoy ‘calm’ Halloween party in Sunnyvale

SUNNYVALE (KPIX) — On Halloween night, kids of all ages will be hitting the streets, looking for thrills, chills and, of course, a lot of candy. But, for children with autism, all the excitement can be too much so, on Sunday, autism families got a chance to celebrate in a much calmer setting. Loud noises and flashing lights may be fun for many but sensations are magnified by autism, making it downright terrifying for some.

“Autism families can have a very hard time on Halloween,” said Jill Escher, a board member of the S.F. Autism Society. She should know, her 16-year-old daughter Sophie is autistic.

“I used to take Sophie trick-or-treating when she was little and she wasn’t able to say ‘trick or treat’ and someone would say, ‘Oh, you’ve got to say trick or treat.’ I’m like, ‘umm…she can’t,'” Escher said.

On Sunday, the San Francisco Autism Society threw their annual Halloween party, this time at Smile Farm in Sunnyvale. Families with autistic kids got a chance to get close to some friendly farm animals in a calm and comfortable atmosphere….

A recent CDC study of San Diego County found that up to four percent of children had an autism diagnosis but the rise in cases may simply be because the public and the medical community are doing a better job of recognizing it….


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