Magazine article The Exceptional Parent

United Nations Asked for Better Oversight Following Incident Involving Teen with Autism

Magazine article The Exceptional Parent

United Nations Asked for Better Oversight Following Incident Involving Teen with Autism

Article excerpt

The Ruderman Family Foundation, an international leader in disability inclusion, called on the United Nations to intervene after the United Nations Educational Pilgrimage for Youth, Inc. (UNEPY) Board of Directors' decided to exclude 15-year-old Niko Boskovic from their annual UNEPY event this summer, allegedly because of his autism.

Boskovic had won an essay contest that had earned him the trip and was, according to reports, rejected after the program's board of directors learned of his disability, stating, "They don't have the staff and knowledge to be accountable for someone with a disability."

"For an organization focused on human rights it is nothing short of disgraceful to be discriminating against Boskovic due to his disability and denying him his civil right to be included and accommodated," said Jay Ruderman, President of the Ruderman Family Foundation. "We call on the United Nations to condemn this decision by UNEPY. We also call on UNEPY to issue an apology to Boskovic as well as to re-issue an invitation to participate in the event with his peers who have equally and fairly earned their spots as delegates, just as Boskovic has."

Based on reports, Boskovic, who lost his ability to speak and was diagnosed with autism at the age of three, was set to join 300 other winners for the annual UNEPY trip this summer, which brings together teens to visit areas of the US and Canada to teach them about the United Nations. …

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