Meet Julia! Autism Society Discusses Sesame Street's First Muppet With Autism

Posted April 01, 2017

The character's arrival on the show is part of a larger educational effort by "Sesame Street".

Julia, the newest character on Sesame Street, is being highlighted as one of the great steps to keeping programs like PBS alive, by introducing a character with Autism.

Julia, a young muppet with red hair and bright green eyes is joining the cast of the 48 year-old show to help raise awareness of the condition and help tackle the stigma and misunderstanding that still surrounds it.

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60 Minutes offered a preview of Julia on Sunday's episode when correspondent Lesley Stahl visited the Sesame Street set while Julia's first episode was being filmed.

Autism diagnoses have risen steadily in recent years to a rate of one in every 68 United States children, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. "The response from the autism community to "See Amazing in All Children" has been extraordinary, and we are committed to continuing our efforts to promote understanding and acceptance of autism, as part of our mission of helping all children grow smarter, stronger, and kinder".

Sesame Street has been on the air since 1969 and features a host of famous characters including Big Bird, Bert and Ernie, Elmo and Cookie Monster.

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To illustrate, we see a video of Carl Jr . chomping down on burgers with three scantily clad women to his father's disapproval. Photos of disembodied lips, a naked woman with burgers covering her breasts, and women in bathing suits cover the walls.

"It's tricky because autism is not one thing, because it is different for every single person who has autism", writer Christine Ferraro told "60 Minutes".

Badesch said that it was obvious the committee "really wanted to get it right - and they got it right", with Julia's character. "Maybe she didn't like me", Big Bird said looking confused.

Scenes with Julia are meant to remove whatever discomfort people may feel upon meeting a child with autism. "I would like her to be just Julia".

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The Arc of Florida says "Sesame Street" has had a number of diverse characters in its history, but this is the first time it's introduced one on the autism spectrum.