At 1 in 45, NJ Leads the Nation
New Jersey’s autism rate is the highest in the US, with 1 in 45 children diagnosed with the developmental disability. Experts do not know if this is due to better screening or another cause, such as an environmental problem. New Jersey has a very dense population in the northern half of the state, where coincidentally there is a very high volume of chemical and other industries.
Autism has increased nationally at 30 percent (30%) since 2012, according to the Center for Disease Control (CDC). One in 68 persons under 21 are calculated to have the disorder – nearly 1.2 million children nationally. Some estimate more than 39 Million Americans affected, directly or indirectly due to an aging population, where children grow to become autistic adults.
Boys are affected more than girls, with 1 in 28 in New Jersey and 1 in 42 nationally affected. In the US, 1 in 189 girls are affected, while the percentage of girls in New Jersey is 1 in 133.
There is a common misconception that New Jersey’s high autism rate is due to parents of autistic children moving to the state to take advantage of excellent special education programs. New Jersey ranks second with children born in state with the disorder.
Autism Citizen’s Role
At Autism Citizen, we are gravely concerned that these rates require special attention in the courts, as autistic individuals face all sorts of legal challenges. Whether being arrested for crimes, or dealing with contracts and estate planning, autism creates the need for specially trained attorneys capable of dealing the the varying needs of their clients.
Our courts must also be aware of these needs, and judges particularly observant and protective of autistic individuals rights, which are all too easily violated by unscrupulous opponents. It is unfortunate, but even the lawyers representing clients can and all too often do, take advantage of their clients and fail to protect their rights and civil liberties.
Autism Citizen was established in New Jersey to deal with the training of those in the legal profession, and referral of autistic individuals (or their families) to verified attorneys. The goal of Reform It Now is to ensure that the autistic are treated fairly, and their circumstances, requisites and rights are protected by the lawyers they retain, and by the courts.
Autism is a growing condition, and as such conditions grow, society, including its courts and legal profession must adapt, grow, and face the challenges it presents. The NJ autism rate is indicative of the rest of the US. The services we’ll provide to the NJ legal community, and to those afflicted with the disorder will form the basis for national protections.
The disorder does not affect each individual in the same manner, which makes it difficult to provide services without specific training.