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As Autism Awareness Month Ends, See These Signs
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Written by Maury Brown   
Friday, 30 April 2010 10:02

Autism Puzzle Piece

As the end of April arrives, International Autism Awareness month ends, but clearly, autism’s reach across all spectrums of society does not. Much like sports, it knows no boundaries, reaching  all races, creeds, colors, and socioeconomic classes.

The Business of Sports Network has spent each of the last three years actively involved in autism awareness, and we plan to continue those efforts. We wish to give special thanks to Autism Speaks for lending assistance in our campaign, and extra special thanks to those below in the sports and entertainment industries who lent their names to the Business of Sports Network Autism Awareness Campaign. But, before we get to that, this is what is of critical importance. Please, pass this information along so that others might be aware of autism’s pervasive reach:

Here is how the Autism Society of America describes autism:

Autism is a complex developmental disability that typically appears during the first three years of life and affects a person’s ability to communicate and interact with others. Autism is defined by a certain set of behaviors and is a "spectrum disorder" that affects individuals differently and to varying degrees. There is no known single cause for autism, but increased awareness and funding can help families today.

Autism is treatable. Children do not "outgrow" autism, but studies show that early diagnosis and intervention lead to significantly improved outcomes.

Here are some signs to look for in the children in your life:

  • Lack of or delay in spoken language
  • Repetitive use of language and/or motor mannerisms (e.g., hand-flapping, twirling objects)
  • Little or no eye contact
  • Lack of interest in peer relationships
  • Lack of spontaneous or make-believe play
  • Persistent fixation on parts of objects

The following information is provided by Autism Speaks:


Did you know ...

  • Autism now affects 1 in 110 children and 1 in 70 boys
  • Autism prevalence figures are growing
  • More children will be diagnosed with autism this year than with AIDS, diabetes & cancer combined
  • Autism is the fastest-growing serious developmental disability in the U.S.
  • Autism costs the nation over $35 billion per year, a figure expected to significantly increase in the next decade
  • Autism receives less than 5% of the research funding of many less prevalent childhood diseases
  • Boys are four times more likely than girls to have autism
  • There is no medical detection or cure for autism

Prevalence vs. Private Funding

  • Leukemia: Affects 1 in 1,200 / Funding: $277 million
  • Muscular Dystrophy: Affects 1 in 100,000 / Funding: $162 million
  • Pediatric AIDS: Affects 1 in 300 / Funding: $394 million
  • Juvenile Diabetes: Affects 1 in 500 / Funding: $156 million
  • Autism: Affects 1 in 110 / Funding: $79 million

National Institutes of Health Funds Allocation

  • Total 2009 NIH budget: $35.9 billion
  • Of this, only $196 million goes directly to autism research. This represents 0.5% of total NIH funding.

IF YOU ARE WITHIN THE MEDIA, WE ENCOURAGE YOU TO JOIN THE CAMPAIGN, AS WELL AS AUTISM SPEAKS EFFORTS. LINK OR REPURPOSE THIS MATERIAL TO HELP THE CAUSE.

The following have lent their name in saying they support autism awareness, if you wish to be added to the list, please contact Maury Brown, president of the Business of Sports Network, for more details.

Corporate Endorsers

Autism Speaks

Populous (Stadium and Global Design)

Sports Management Worldwide

Triple-A Portland Beavers of the PCL

Portland Timbers FC of the USL, soon to be MLS

Oregon Sports Authority

Yardbarker Network

Sports Business Radio

Sports and Entertainment Endorsers

  • Matt Kemp (Outfielder, Los Angeles Dodgers)
  • Peter Gammons (MLB Network, MLB.com, NESN)
  • Chuck Armstrong (President, Seattle Mariners)
  • Larry Cancro (Senior Vice President of Fenway Affairs for the Boston Red Sox. Also Chairman of Autism Speaks, New England. Board member Melmark, New England a school that specializes in autism and similar cognitive disabilities)
  • Gordon Edes (ESPNBoston.com)
  • Peter Abraham (Boston Globe)
  • Chuck Greenberg (Pittsburgh sports attorney)
  • Jim Duquette (Sirius/XM Radio MLB Home Plate, former GM Baltimore Orioles, New York Mets)
  • David Kahn (President, Basketball Operations, Minnesota Timberwolves)
  • Victor Rojas (Television play-by-play voice of the LA Angels, formerly with MLB Network)
  • Will Carroll (Baseball Prospectus)
  • Jesse Sanchez (MLB.com)
  • Devon Teeple (Business of Sports Network)
  • Jordan Kobritz (Business of Sports Network)
  • Joe Tetreault (Business of Sports Network)
  • Alyssa Milano (Television, screen and stage actor)
  • Ken Rosenthal (FOXSports.com, MLB Network)
  • Dave Sims (Television play-by-play commentator for the Seattle Mariners, radio play-by-play for Sunday Night Football on Westwood One, television play-by-play host for UFL on VERSUS)
  • Joe Hamrahi (Baseball Daily Digest, Baseball Prospectus)
  • Todd Radom (Graphic artist, sports logo creator)
  • Brent Gambill (Executive Producer, MLB Home Plate, Sirius/XM Radio)
  • Dave Barr (Producer, Sports Talk With Bo Mattingly. KREB 1190 Fayetteville, KTTG ESPN 96.3 FM Ft. Smith, KABZ 103.7 FM Little Rock)
  • Russ Levine, VP of Digital Production for NHL.com
  • Pat Courtney (MLB VP Public Relations)
  • Mike Dilorenzo (NHL spokesperson)
  • Jason Rosenberg (It’s About the Money, Stupid blog)
  • Jason Collette (DockoftheRays.com)
  • Joe Siegler (RangerFans.com)
  • Gary Armida (Full Count Pitch blog)
  • Jeff Levine (Business of Sports Network)
  • Pete Toms (Business of Sports Network)


Donate
Click to donate
to Autism Speaks


Maury BrownMaury Brown is the Founder and President of the Business of Sports Network, which includes The Biz of Baseball, The Biz of Football, The Biz of Basketball and The Biz of Hockey. He is available for hire or freelance. Brown's full bio is here. He looks forward to your comments via email and can be contacted through the Business of Sports Network.

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