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First responders learn about the signs of autism to better prepare for emergency situations

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YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio - It's hard for individuals with autism spectrum disorder to express themselves, which can make them more vulnerable.

For that reason, first responders gathered in Youngstown Wednesday to learn more about the disability.

The training was designed to better equip first responders in emergency situations involving individuals with autism.

Through his own experience in raising a son on spectrum, Akron Police Sgt. Mark Farrar explained the most common calls responders may encounter and identified behaviors associated with the disability.

"Someone with autism is not any more prone to be violent than their typical counterpart, but they will have frequent outbursts and they may have frequent shouting or outbursts or acts of violence that may be more due to their inability to communicate," Farrar said.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one in 50 children is diagnosed with some form of autism.

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