A mum’s innovative solution to help her autistic son go trick or treating on Halloween has taken the world by storm.
Omairis Taylor spoke about her three-year-old son, who has non-verbal autism, in a Facebook post which has since gone viral.
The mother explained that as her son is non-verbal, homeowners will often be left waiting for him to say ‘trick or treat’ when he ventures round on Halloween. In order for the youngster to get a piece of candy, then, Taylor has to explain his situation over and over again to each house they visit.
Taylor explained last year she had to do this continually for five blocks; a procedure which no doubt became taxing quite quickly.
The National Autistic Society explain some autistic children are delayed in their use of language and some autistic adults don’t use speech; therefore they are non-verbal. They may appear not to hear what you say to them, not respond to their name, or appear indifferent to any attempts you make to communicate.
To avoid Taylor having to continually explain her son’s situation, this year the young boy will be carrying a blue bucket to signify his autism.
The idea is not a new one but the mum explained it on Facebook in the hopes of raising awareness to those giving out candy, as well as for other autistic children hoping to stock up on sugary treats this Halloween.
She also assured homeowners she would say ‘trick or treat’ on her son’s behalf, writing:
This year we will be trying the BLUE BUCKET to signify he has autism. Please allow him (or anyone with a BLUE BUCKET) to enjoy this day and don’t worry I’ll still say TRICK OR TREAT for him, I’ll get my mom candy tax later.
This holiday is hard enough without any added stress. Thank you in advance.
I have made this post public in hopes you will share and get the BLUE BUCKET message out there for Autism Awareness and acceptance this Halloween.
Autistic kids are using blue buckets for candy on Hallloween. If they don't say Trick-O-Treat or thanks they're not rude, maybe non verbal. If your child has Autism consider using a blue bucket to improve their experience. #AutismAwareness #bluebucketcampaign
— Scream of The Butterfly (@odetomedusa) October 16, 2019
Taylor’s hope of raising awareness proved successful as her post has since racked up over 126,000 shares, meaning countless people are now informed about the meaning of the blue bucket.
The idea of the blue bucket was referred to last year by the autism advocacy organisation Autism Speaks, when they shared the story of a 21-year-old with autism who loves to trick-or-treat.
Rachel Brnilovich, clinical director of Pennsylvania Autism Action Center, expressed her delight at the initiative to Fox News, saying:
We love this campaign. It really gives our kids an opportunity to go out, no matter their age and experience Halloween.
Taking notice of the blue bucket and then just treating them like a child, how any child would be, give them the candy and just move on.
With Halloween just around the corner, be sure to be on the lookout for the blue buckets!
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Emily Brown first began delivering important news stories aged just 13, when she launched her career with a paper round. She graduated with a BA Hons in English Language in the Media from Lancaster University, and went on to become a freelance writer and blogger. Emily contributed to The Sunday Times Travel Magazine and Student Problems before becoming a journalist at UNILAD, where she works on breaking news as well as longer form features.