Episode 4: Building Bridges With Respect: Alex Mann
In today's episode, we have an extraordinary guest who is making a significant impact on police departments and changing the world one step at a time. His name is Alex Mann, and he is a young and dynamic individual diagnosed with autism.
Jerry shares how he came across Alex through his interactions with various police departments on social media. Alex's name kept popping up as he visited and connected with multiple departments, spreading awareness about autism and educating emergency personnel on how to better interact with individuals on the spectrum. Inspired by Alex's work and his shared mission, Captain Jerry knew he had to invite him as a guest on the podcast.
During the interview, Alex reveals that his journey began in 2018 when he decided to show his support for the police amidst growing negativity and media coverage. He wanted to demonstrate that even with a disability, he could make a difference and help law enforcement understand how they could assist individuals with autism. With no personal connections to law enforcement, Alex took the initiative to reach out to police departments via Facebook messages.
Despite initial nerves, Alex's determination and genuine interest in law enforcement led him to overcome any intimidation. He emphasizes the importance of planning and preparing before making the initial contact. He advises families and individuals to have a clear idea of what they want to convey and to remain resilient even if some departments reject them. Rejection is part of the process, and it's essential not to take it personally.
Jerry also delves into the three key aspects road cops should understand about individuals with autism. Alex highlights the significance of speaking calmly and avoiding loud noises and sudden movements. He suggests providing a routine or schedule during interactions, especially during traffic stops, to help individuals on the spectrum feel more at ease. Alex shares personal anecdotes and emphasizes how even slight deviations from expected schedules can greatly impact individuals' emotional states.
The conversation transitions to the power of parents and individuals with autism to proactively reach out to law enforcement. Captain Jerry underscores the importance of parents taking charge and advocating for their loved ones rather than waiting for external experts to initiate the dialogue. Alex echoes this sentiment and encourages individuals to break through their intimidation by rehearsing what they want to say and being persistent. Rejection should not deter them, as it is ultimately the department's loss.
Alex expresses his deep appreciation for the connections he has built with law enforcement. Despite his challenges in making friends, he feels a strong sense of belonging within the law enforcement family. Alex's impact goes beyond the visits; he leaves a lasting impression and creates friendships with officers. His work has become a remarkable example of bridging the gap between law enforcement and the special needs community.
This captivating podcast interview showcases the determination, empathy, and positive impact that Alex Mann is making in changing perceptions and fostering understanding between law enforcement and individuals with autism. His story serves as an inspiration for others to proactively engage and make a difference in their communities.
Alex's Contact Information:
email: [email protected]
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/alexmann28Subscribe Now!