Senator Jim Munson tables bill to recognize World Autism Awareness Day

For Immediate Release

SENATOR JIM MUNSON TABLES BILL TO RECOGNIZE WORLD AUTISM AWARENESS DAY

OTTAWA, June 9, 2008 – The Honourable Jim Munson, Senator (Ottawa – Rideau Canal), today introduced a bill to recognize April 2 as World Autism Awareness Day.  By recognizing World Autism Awareness Day, Canada will join 192 other United Nations members who agreed that such a day would bring autism, a neurological disorder that affects an increasing number of families around the world, to the attention of all.

“By recognizing World Autism Awareness Day we are saying to families with autism: You are not alone.  We care,” said Senator Munson.  Autism affects one in 165 Canadian families and there is no known cure.  The number of Canadians diagnosed with autism has grown by 150% in the last six years and there is no national strategy to address the growing problem.

“World Autism Awareness Day will draw the attention of citizens to the plight of the many families, in Canada and around the world, who are affected by autism,” said Senator Donald Oliver, seconder of the bill.  Worldwide, autism affects more children than pediatric cancer, diabetes, and AIDS combined.