'Sesame Street' welcomes Julia, a Muppet with autism
01:33, Apr 1, 2017
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Popular children's TV show "Sesame Street" is introducing a new muppet called Julia who has autism. The website also has a collection of videos featuring Julia from her debut episode.
"The big discussion right at the start was, 'How do we do this?"
Dr. Jeanette Betancourt, the senior vice president of United States social impact, said in an interview with PEOPLE that "Children with autism are five times more likely to get bullied, and with one in 68 children having autism, that's a lot of bullying". They say every child with autism is different, and Julia is just one illustration.
Julia was first introduced in 2015, playing alongside Elmo and Abby Cadabby, as part of an online-only Digital Storybook story called Sesame Street and Autism: See the incredible in All Children.
This is published unedited from the PTI feed. The episode is titled Meet Julia and it will air on April 10.
"We had to explain to Big Bird that Julia likes Big Bird", Elmo said.
Her name is Julia, and she has autism. This is a significant step in improving public understanding of autism, and making people on the autism spectrum feel more accepted. "Had my son's friends been exposed to his behaviors through something that they had seen on TV before they experienced them in the classroom, they might not have been frightened", Gordon told Lesley Stahl.
Show writers say Julia represents the full range of children on the spectrum.
"It's important for kids without autism to see what autism can look like", Gordon told the CBS show 60 Minutes in a preview on Sunday. "They might not have been anxious when he cried".
Amy Cooper is the type of journalist that when asked "What do you bring to the table", she replies "I am the table". "There is an expression that goes, 'If you've met one person with autism, you've met one person with autism'".
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