Sesame Street has announced plans to feature a new puppet named Julia who has autism.
“As the parent of a child with autism, I wished that it had come out years before, when my own child was at the Sesame Street age,” Stacey Gordon, the puppeteer who plays Julia, said during a recent segment about the character on 60 Minutes.
Meanwhile, writer Christine Ferraro adds that the show’s creative team has worked closely with autism organizations, educators, and families to decide the best way to portray a child with autism, including how to explain autism at a pre-school level. Julia made her first appearance in the Sesame Street neighborhood in October 2015 in an online Digital Storybook story called Sesame Street and Autism: See the amazing in all children. She will make her debut on the children’s show in April and will be introduced to Big Bird by friends Elmo and Abby Cadabby.
As a parent, have you been in a situation where you’ve had a conversation with your child about a peer with autism?