Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders Awareness Day Sept. 9 is International Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders Awareness Day. Drinking alcohol during pregnancy can cause FASDs, which include a wide range of physical and mental disabilities and lasting emotional and behavioral problems. Learn more about FASD by visiting the AAP Medical Home Web page or the CDC website
FASD: Despite challenges, not an intellectual deficit
This is the very good part: Many parents are contacting the Team to ask that their children be evaluated. It is simple–the parents say that they may have used alcohol before realizing that they were pregnant. The children are accepted for evaluation.
It is so easy that there are sixty children waiting now for a diagnosis. We sometimes joke at the clinic that may have to start working the evening shift as well as in the daytime. But the research is clear: a diagnosis at the youngest possible age is one of the strongest predictors for a good life outcome for alcohol-affected children.
And, this is the very hard part: some current statistics are not hopeful. 80% of people with FASD, Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders, cannot keep a job without on-going support. 70% will be confined sometime in their life for mental health reasons, alcohol and drug rehab or for committing a crime. 60% of people with FASD will have trouble finishing high school. And over 50 % will have sexual involvements that could get them into legal difficulties.
Here is a clip from the American Bar Association regarding a new requirement for legal professionals. For the complete article go to: www.americanbar.org
RESOLVED, That the American Bar Association urges attorneys and judges, state, local, and specialty bar associations, and law school clinical programs to help identify and respond effectively to Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) in children and adults, through training to enhance awareness of FASD and its impact on individuals in the child welfare, juvenile justice, and adult criminal justice systems and the value of collaboration with medical, mental health, and disability experts.
FURTHER RESOLVED, That the American Bar Association urges the passage of laws, and adoption of policies at all levels of government, that acknowledge and treat the effects of prenatal alcohol exposure and better assist individuals with FASD.
Fourth Annual FASD Conference
Thanks to all that attended this year and made it a success! There was a wonderful turn out of around 250 people, including: mental health professionals, caregivers, parents, guardians and advocates for the cause. A special thanks to our guest speakers: Joe Cassidy, Tom Donaldson, Dr. Stephanie King, Dr. Tina Wade, Dr. Todd Ochs, Megan Hazzard, Aliceson Treach, Shereen Venning, Wendy Mattison and Janet McDonald. An extra special thank you to Ajeet Charate, without whom the conference would not be possible. We are looking forward to next year’s conference and hope to see everybody there.