Chief James X. Fitzpatrick
90 Lowell St
Lawrence, MA 01840
For Immediate Release
Friday, March 31, 2017
Contact: John Guilfoil
Email: [email protected]
Lawrence Police to Host Autism Awareness Day
Officers to Wear Blue Puzzle Badges to Support the Cause of Awareness
LAWRENCE — Chief James Fitzpatrick is pleased to announce that the Lawrence Police Department will wear special blue badges and will host an Autism Awareness Day as part of the “Light It Up Blue” campaign in April to raise awareness about the disorder and give community members the chance to meet officers and tour the station.
Tuesday, April 4 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.
Lawrence Police Department, 90 Lowell St.
As part of the free event, the Lawrence Police Department will open its doors to the public for a meet-and-greet with officers, a tour of the station and a chance to get an up close look at police cruisers and other equipment.
For “Light It Up Blue,” the department will also unveil new light blue badges with a puzzle piece emblem — the universal logo for autism — which they will wear throughout April.
The event correlates with National Autism Awareness Month, which occurs every year in April and works to raise awareness about the disorder and raise money for research, treatment, therapy and interventions.
Officers will also be speak about the department’s Safe Watch Program, which proactively catalogs information on individuals who may have disabilities or conditions that would cause them to be at risk for wandering or getting lost. SafeWatch will instantly generate a missing person report complete with a photo, personal identifying information, medical history, physical description, potential locations they may travel to and many other important data points. This feature is accessible by mobile terminals in the police cars and can be transmitted out to all officers on a search.
The Lawrence Police Department would like to thank all sponsors who are contributing to this event:
- Delphi Technology Solutions, Inc.
- Brush Stroke Sign Design
- Adamson Industries Corporation
- Neptune Uniform & Equipment Inc.
- VH Blackinton & Co. Inc.
- Don Kennett Inc.
- Columbia Auto Seat Covers
- New England Framing & Art
- Greater Lawrence Technical School
- Lawrence Public Works Department
- Sheehan’s Service Station
“Many people’s lives are affected by autism and we’re happy to be involved in raising awareness for this disorder,” Chief Fitzpatrick said. “We encourage the community to come out next month to meet members of this department and learn about how our Safe Watch Program that could benefit a loved one.”
Autism is a complex developmental disability that typically appears during the first three years of life. Children and adults with autism usually have difficulties with verbal and non-verbal communication and social interactions and activities. Over half a million people in the U.S. today have some form of autism.