Bullying is a hot topic and the sad fact is that children with disabilities experience bullying at a much higher rate than the general population. Students with disabilities who are bullied and those kids who witness their treatment are at risk for poor academic performance, mental illness problems and substance abuse. These risks make the issue of bullying far too important to be complacent.
Anti-Bullying Campaign Launched In Michigan
In conjunction with Anthony Ianni, an anti-bullying tour has been launched by Autism Alliance of Michigan (AAOM) to raise awareness of the bullying problem of kids with autism and to empower kids to eliminate bullying. The tour, referred to as the Relentless Tour is a grassroots initiative spreading awareness across the state of Michigan. According to The Relentless Tour, those with autism are of the highest targeted groups by bullies, in the range of 65% to 90%.
Tour Has Perfect Advocate
Anthony Ianni is a sought after anti-bullying advocate in Michigan, as well as across the country and he has pledged to visit as many schools as possible in the state to help eradicate bullying. Diagnosed with autism and not expected to graduate or play sports, Ianni is the ideal spokesman for such a message. Because of his autism and his unusually tall stature (he was 6’9” at a young age), Ianni was bullied relentlessly a a child. His parents were told he’d live in a group home for all his adult life. However, Ianni defied the odds when he graduated from MSU and became the first college basketball player known to have autism. He also played in 2 Big Ten Championships and a Final Four game during his time playing college basketball.
Several Michigan Programs Provide Anti-Bullying Resources
There are other programs in Michigan that focus on bullying prevention in communities. These programs help strengthen communities and eventually improve the health outcomes of these students. By examining the issues that contribute to bullying behaviors, effective anti-bullying measures in communities can contribute to creating healthy youth and adult relationships. One such program is BeSafe where educators work with childcare providers and afterschool clubs with hands-on activities and scenarios. These activities are designed to create teen/adult partnerships while building life skills. They are meant to spark discussions that focus on such topics as respect, human differences, social and emotional intelligence.
ABA Treatment For Autism In Ann Arbor, Michigan
Customized center-based ABA (Applied Behavior Analysis) autism therapy is offered at Creating Brighter Futures. Our family-based clinic offers ABA autism treatment for children between ages 2 and 8. Children benefit by fun group therapy and interacting with peers in our comfortable, familiar setting. Families benefit by not only knowing that their children are safe and happy, but also by our focus on educating family members as well as children. Call Creating Brighter Futures to learn more about our unique family-based autism clinic and to schedule a free consultation.