We were recently introduced to the Office of Assemblymember Angelo Santabarbara from New York State Assembly District 111, and he is the father of an Autistic teenage son. In a recent press release about a new Autism Action Plan in New York, he stated:

Parents, siblings, friends and other caretakers of people with autism spectrum disorder across the state can take comfort in knowing that they are not alone and our work is not done. Autism Action is just the beginning. Together we face the challenges many autism families face, but we can overcome those challenges together.
— Assemblyman Angelo Santabarbara
  Angelo and Michael Santabarbara

Angelo and Michael Santabarbara

"Autism Action NY" is a five-point plan that is focused on:

  • increasing job opportunities;
  • providing independent housing options;
  • improving access to information;
  • assisting in communication; and
  • creating a centralized location for services in New York.

There are times when these types of plans have been seen as "window dressing" by Albany politicians. However, as a father of an Autistic teenager, I am very optimistic about this initiative.

One of my goals has been to figure out models where "Inclusion" can include Veterans and the Developmentally Disabled in supportive housing together. On this weekend of Army vs Navy football, this Navy family has a new Army friend in Albany as Assemblymember Santabarbara has served in the Army Reserves.

Contact/Follow Assemblymember Santabarbara here.

Angelo Santabarbara @ Facebook

#GoNavy

 Army Reservist Angelo Santabarbara

Army Reservist Angelo Santabarbara

 Dustin Sweeney & Midshipman Dylan Sweeney with Dustin's Caregiver Fazie

Dustin Sweeney & Midshipman Dylan Sweeney with Dustin's Caregiver Fazie