Learn More About the Duluth Police Department Autism Awareness Squad Car [VIDEO]
If you've seen this unique Duluth Police squad car on the streets or at events around town over the last number of months, you might have wondered the story behind it. Officer Ron Tinsley from the Duluth Police Department offers an explanation of the history of this vehicle and how it is used around the community in the video above.
As you can tell from the graphics, the vehicle was deigned in support of autism awareness, specifically calling attention to the 45th anniversary of the Autism Society of Minnesota with a decal on the hood of the car and website elsewhere on the vehicle.
The Autism Society of Minnesota explains that autism is a complex developmental disability that is present from birth or very early in development. It affects essential human behaviors such as social interaction, the ability to communicate ideas and feelings, imagination, self-regulation, and the ability to establish relationships with others. According to information from the CDC (via Autism Speaks), 1 in 68 children (1 in 42 boys and 1 in 189 girls) in the United States is reported as having autism spectrum disorder.
Organizations like the Autism Society of Minnesota help with education, support and advocacy designed to enhance the lives of those affected by autism from birth through retirement.
According to Officer Tinsley, the trend of cause-based squad cars is growing among departments around the country. This autism awareness squad in Duluth is the first of a few possible cause-based squad cars that you may see on the streets or around town in the future.