While some US parents are giving their children blue buckets this Halloween to signify autism, a leading Canadian advocacy group says it opposes the tendency to "detach children".
AN viral Facebook post sparked a huge online debate about what the blue pumpkin buckets used while trick or treating really meant.
American mother Omairis Taylor has a three-year-old son with nonverbal autism.
She claimed that during last Halloween's trick or treat, some homeowners expected the boy to say "trick or treat", forcing her to explain the situation to the "next five blocks."
"This year we will try the blue bucket to mean it has autism," Taylor wrote.
"Please allow him (or anyone else with a blue bucket) to enjoy this day and don't worry, I'll still tell him trick or treat."
Taylor added that he made the post public in the hope that it will be shared to spread the "blue bucket message for autism awareness".
Your message has gained traction online and has been shared over 130,000 times.
But a spokesman for Autism Canada, who provides information and support for people with autism, told CTVNews.ca that blue buckets "were not something that took off here" and that the organization "does not endorse the idea of a child with autism. . carrying a bucket of blue pumpkin on Halloween. "
"We believe this practice highlights the child as being different," Autism Canada said in a statement to CTVNews.ca.
“None of the autistic communities we connect with in Canada is recommending the blue bucket for just that reason.
“If a nonverbal child loves trick or treating, parents can put a small label on their clothes or give a card to the homeowner who says,“ I don't talk, but I still want to tell you – Trick or treat? and thank you! & # 39; "
The group confirmed that a Canadian mother contacted to inquire about the blue bucket phenomenon.
Alicia Plumer, also from the USA, wrote in october last year that his 21-year-old son, who has autism and loves Halloween, would be dressed up and carrying a blue bucket.
Plumer's post was also shared 28,000 times, which started the debate.
Looks like she got the idea from a friend, Lisa Lee, who told Washington D.C. WJLA station that she "thought I had read something on Facebook about it".
"Really what I read was about the blue-green pumpkins and children with food allergies – but why not blue pumpkins for autism?" Lee said.
The teal pumpkin design in the USA was created in 2014 by Food Allergy Research and Education (FARE) to "raise awareness about food allergies and promote the inclusion of all treats or tricks throughout the Halloween season."
So for now, it seems that the blue bucket trend is confined to parts of the US, as awareness grows of ways to make Halloween more accessible to people with autism.