If your child has autism, consider a blue bucket this Halloween

The blue bucket could deter questions about a child trick-or-treating with autism, a developmental condition caused by brain abnormalities that can affect speech and behavior.

Children worldwide will embrace the Halloween tradition on Oct. 31, knocking on doors anticipating sweet treats — and a select few will proudly carry blue buckets.

In the United States, blue buckets signify a child has autism. According to BBC News, Sophie Underwood-Jones, whose 6-year-old son, Noa, is on the autism spectrum and is non-verbal, hopes the United Kingdom can catch on to the trend.

“It’s just a small little thing for us as a family that you don’t have to explain about your children — about their disability,” Underwood-Jones said, the BBC reported.

Blue pumpkin Halloween buckets signal that a trick-or-treater has autism. (Photo Credit: Adobe Stock)

Autism is a developmental condition caused by brain abnormalities, The Associated Press noted in a March report on its prevalence. Symptoms include linguistic and academic difficulties, social and emotional disengagement, and an exceptional demand for regularity.

In March, AP reported that autism was diagnosed more frequently among Black and Hispanic children than in white children in the U.S.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention noted that one in 36 8-year-olds had autism in 2020, up from one in 44 two years ago.

In the past, experts most often diagnosed white children, typically from middle- or upper-income households, with access to autism specialists. As late as 2010, white children were 30% more likely to be diagnosed with autism than Black children and 50% more likely than Hispanic children.

Scientists believe heredity may have a role, but there is no known explanation for why it would be more frequent in one racial or cultural group than another.

According to the BBC, Underwood-Jones, of Wales, hasn’t taken Noa trick-or-treating since he was a baby, recalling times when certain people made snarky comments about her son failing to say thanks or “trick-or-treat.”

The mother, who doesn’t like to explain that her son is autistic, found blue pumpkin-shaped buckets online and hopes it will help create a better experience.

“We’re in 2023 now and I feel children like Noa — and adults — should be accepted,” Underwood-Jones said, according to the BBC. “They shouldn’t have to explain who they are or if they do have a disability.”

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