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Wednesday, October 15, 2014

"Autistic Child" Street Signs

Cara Spoto reports at The Journal Times (Racine, WI) about Erin and Jason Krencisz, who are seeking an "Autistic Child" street sign to protect their son.
The family has installed alarms to keep Markus from leaving the house unattended and “bolting out into the street,” but they are hoping a request they currently have before the city’s Traffic Commission will add an extra layer of protection for their son.
The couple has asked the commission to allow for the installation of an “Autistic Child” sign on their north-side block.
Similar to “Blind Child” or “Deaf Child” signs, the warning sign would be aimed at telling motorists that there is a child in the area with a disability who might not be as aware of traffic dangers as other kids.
Erin Krencisz, 33, who is friends with other mothers of children on the autism spectrum, said she decided to ask about getting a sign on her block after hearing that a friend of hers had one installed in Pennsylvania.
“Safety is an issue with him all the time,” she said. “I just thought, ‘you know what? I am doing this.’ ”
Fifth District Alderman Melissa Kaprelian-Becker, who has helped the couple with their request, thinks the request for a sign makes sense.
“There are many different forms of disabilities,” Kaprelian-Becker said. “You need to caution drivers.”
A few months ago, Portsmouth, Virginia, denied a similar request.  WAVY-TV reported:

Last year, WXIX in Cincinnati reported :
An Alexandria [Kentucky] mother has made a difference in her neighborhood that will help other families with children who are battling autism.

Katie Ruschman took simple steps to have an 'Autistic Child Area' sign put on her street; the first in the city.

As the mother of a 5-year old son with autism, Katie wanted to get the word out to drivers that an autistic child is living on this street.

Two months ago, Katie reached out to her friend Andy Schabell, who also serves on Alexandria City Council.