Prime Minister Philip Davis’s Remarks at the R.E.A.C.H. “Light It Up Blue” Ceremony

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Good evening,
I am pleased to join you today as we come together in honour of World Autism Awareness Day, to not only promote awareness and understanding of Autism, but to also promote acceptance, inclusion,  and support for people with autism. 

Today, we light it up blue on behalf of people with autism, as well as the family, friends, loved ones, organizations, and communities who are celebrating and championing the cause of Autism Awareness. 

Seventeen years ago, the United Nations General Assembly designated April 2nd as World Autism Awareness Day, a date that has now become a rallying point for those who support and advocate for a more inclusive society for this community. 

The theme for this year’s celebration, “An Infinite Spectrum of Possibilities,” beautifully captures the essence of what we are here to acknowledge: the wonderful potential within every individual on the autism spectrum.

I applaud REACH for its dedication and tireless efforts to this cause. Since 1999, R.E.A.C.H. has provided vital support, resources, and advocacy for people living with autism in The Bahamas. Your work has truly made a difference in many lives – not just for those living with autism but for the family members, friends, and loved ones who cherish them and want to see them thrive. Many of the people we are celebrating today were supported in becoming who they are thanks to R.E.A.C.H.

World Autism Awareness Day, despite its name, is about more than awareness. It is a call to action for inclusion, for understanding, and for celebrating the diverse talents and abilities of individuals with autism. 

1 in 100 children around the world are diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder, representing a significant and growing community, including many people living here in The Bahamas.

I’ve always believed that nations succeed best when everyone is given a fair chance to succeed. 

We must continue to advocate, support, implement policies, and launch programmes to expand access, accommodate diversity, treat everyone fairly and justly, and provide support for those who just need a helping hand to fulfill their potential.  And we must never stop advocating, working, and pushing for change until this goal is achieved.

So, tonight, as landmarks across the world light up in blue, as Rawson Square and our House of Assembly are also lit up in blue, we stand in solidarity with all people living with autism. 

Together, we can create a world where every individual can shine in their unique way.

Once again, I offer profound thanks to R.E.A.C.H. for its invaluable contributions to our community. Let’s all continue to support this noble cause, ensuring that every person on the spectrum can look forward to a future filled with promising possibilities.

Thank you.