PASS and GPCF team up for first responder training

Milford. The attendees learned de-escalation techniques and how to communicate with non-verbal individuals.

| 05 Jun 2024 | 03:04

A total of 55 members of local law enforcement and first responders recently training on how to identify, communicate with, and de-escalate individuals with an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) in an emergency. The training was made possible due to a grant from The Greater Pike Community Foundation and Pike Autism Support Services (PASS)

the training was delivered virtually by Gary Weitzen of POAC Autism Services, who has also trained thousands of first responders in N.J. According to PASS, the goal is to keep first responders and individuals with ASD safe. PASS added that about 500 Pike County residents have been diagnosed with ASD, not including summer residents and those visiting the Poconos annually.

The attendees learned strategies for how to communicate with non-verbal individuals, and how to de-escalate someone experiencing a high level of anxiety or a behavioral meltdown. The feedback was all positive, “we all learned something here tonight,” Pass shared.

All who attended received a First Responder Sensory Bag. PASS also gave thanks to the Milford Fire Department for hosting this event.