An Estimated 200,000 Americans Diagnosed with a Severe Case of Tourette Syndrome
1 Out of Every 160 Children Between the Ages of 5 and 17 in the United States has the Condition
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today directed the Governor Mario M. Cuomo Bridge to be illuminated teal on Saturday evening, June 15, to mark the end of National Tourette Syndrome Awareness Month. Tourette Syndrome is a lifelong affliction and estimates from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke indicate that approximately 200,000 people in the United States have been diagnosed with the most severe form of the condition. An even greater number of Americans exhibit milder symptoms associated with Tourette Syndrome such as vocal tics.
"Tourette Syndrome is far more prevalent than most realize, and while there are treatments available for this incurable disease, they often pose a financial burden for patients and their families," Governor Cuomo said. "In order to raise awareness and mark the end of National Tourette Syndrome Awareness Month, I am directing the Mario M. Cuomo Bridge to be lit teal Saturday evening in honor of those who have been diagnosed with this lifelong disease."
According to the Tourette Association of America, Tourette Syndrome is three to five times more common in boys than in girls. There is no known cure for Tourette Syndrome and treatment involves multiple medications and therapies with costs that often can be prohibitive.
This week, the New York State Senate passed a legislative resolution memorializing that Governor Cuomo proclaim May 15 to June 15, 2019, as Tourette Syndrome Awareness Month in New York State, in conjunction with the observance of National Tourette Syndrome Awareness Month.
Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins said, "National Tourette Syndrome Awareness Month is an opportunity to advance research and social acceptance for those who have this disorder. Thousands of New York families are impacted by Tourette Syndrome, and removing stigmas and raising awareness of this disorder will help improve their quality of life. The Senate Majority remains committed to the children, families and individuals across New York State impacted by this disorder."
Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie said, "The Assembly Majority is proud to stand with every New Yorker affected by Tourette Syndrome this month as they work to raise public awareness, promote social acceptance and empower communities around the state to tackle the challenges associated with this complex disorder. We hope the bridge lighting serves as a symbol of our solidarity with these New Yorkers."
Senator Shelley Mayer said, "Thank you to Governor Cuomo for lighting up the Mario M. Cuomo Bridge teal in recognition of National Tourette Syndrome Awareness Month. Tourette Syndrome is a chronic condition that can be particularly difficult for children. I thank our Westchester County Youth Ambassadors from the Tourette Association of America for raising awareness and promoting tolerance and understanding of those with Tourette Syndrome."
Helene Walisever, Chair of the Hudson Valley chapter of the Tourette Association of America, said, "This bridge lighting supports our mission to raise awareness of this widely misunderstood disorder. Promoting greater understanding of Tourette in the community at large will positively impact the health and well-being of children and adults who live with this disorder."
Alexandra Cuttler, Youth Ambassador for the Tourette Association of America and Hartsdale resident, said, "I want to thank Governor Cuomo and our elected officials for lighting the Governor Mario M. Cuomo Bridge in teal this Saturday night to help raise awareness and foster social acceptance about Tourette Syndrome. It took years for me to get properly diagnosed and I want to do everything I can to make sure that kids get the help that they need as early as possible."