Working with people who have intellectual and developmental disabilities, like Down syndrome or autism, can be complex and challenging even for those with years of training. But one group — law enforcement — often encounters people with these conditions in high-stress situations, with little or no training at all.
Patti Saylor knows all too well what the consequences of that can be.
Her son Ethan, who had Down syndrome, died after an encounter with law enforcement when he was 26. It’s a tragedy she believes could have been prevented.