World Autism Awareness Day 2016 celebrated across the world

Apr 2, 2016 09:10 IST

The World Autism Awareness Day 2016 was celebrated across the world on 2 April 2016. The 2016 theme for the day is Autism and the 2030 Agenda: Inclusion and Neurodiversity.

World Autism Awareness Day is an internationally recognised day, encouraging Member States of the United Nations to take measures to raise awareness about children with autism throughout the world.

It was designated by the United Nations General Assembly resolution 62/139. World Autism Awareness Day, passed in council on 1 November 2007 and adopted on 18 December 2007.

This resolution was passed and adopted without a vote in the UN General Assembly, mainly as a supplement to previous UN initiatives to improve human rights.

World Autism Day is also one of only four official health-specific UN Days.

This year’s observance will look ahead to 2030 and reflect on the new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and their implications for improving the lives of people with autism.

2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and Persons with Disabilities

In September 2015, the United Nations General Assembly adopted the ambitious new 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which includes 17 SDGs and 169 targets that promise to leave no one behind.

While all SDGs are universally applicable, disability and persons with disabilities are explicitly referenced in the following goals:  4) Quality Education; 8) Decent Work and Economic Growth; 10) Reduced Inequalities; 11) Sustainable Cities and Communities; and 17) Partnerships for the Goals.

What is Autism?

Autism is a lifelong developmental disability that manifests itself during the first three years of life.

It results from a neurological disorder that affects the functioning of the brain, mostly affecting children and adults in many countries irrespective of gender, race or socio-economic status.

Autism is characterized by impairments in social interaction, problems with verbal and non-verbal communication and restricted, repetitive behaviour, interests and activities.

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