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           City of Chattanooga     Office of the Mayor    Proclamation
     


     Whereas:  Autism is a severe, life-long development disability, resulting in the significant impairment of
                     an individual's ability to learn, develop appropriate social skills, and understand verbal, non-verbal,
                     and reciprocal communication; and
     Whereas:  Autism is the third most common developmental disability, affecting more than 500,000 individuals           
                     nationwide, and many individuals in Chattanooga; and
     Whereas:  No cure for Autism exists but persons with Autism can reach their full potential with an early and     
                      accurate diagnosis and by receiving the appropriate educational and medical interventions; and
     Whereas:  Family support groups like F.E.A.T.- Chattanooga, Families for Early Autism Treatment, are
                     dedicated to the ongoing efforts to advocate for the rights and appropriate interventions of all
                     persons with Autism; and
     Whereas: This family support group remains committed through many volunteer hours to educating area
                    families, professionals in our community and the general public to better understand this lifelong
                    disorder; and
     Whereas: Outback Steakhouse near Hamilton Place Mall and other prominent businesses in Chattanooga
                    will host an annual fund raising luncheon on April 27, 2002, to benefit the important work performed
                     by F.E.A.T-Chattanooga; and
    Whereas:  Autism is a puzzling and complex disability that requires increased medical research to one day find
                    a cure and prevention; and
    Whereas: A greater recognition and understanding of Autism will ensure individuals with Autism reach their
                   full potential as citizens of Chattanooga, Tennessee and the United States of America.

                                 Now, Therefore, I, Bob Corker, Mayor of the City of Chattanooga,
                                        do hereby proclaim the month of April, 2002 as
                               National Autism Awareness Month in Chattanooga, Tennessee.