Halloween can be a difficult time for children suffering from autism, as the condition makes it difficult for them to communicate with others. It also makes it difficult for them to deal with criticism, which they often receive from homeowners after they don't shout, "Trick or treat."
But a Pennsylvania woman has come up with an idea to help fix the annual problem. Michelle Koening's 5-year-old autistic son will be trick-or-treating this year for the first time in his life -- collecting his candy in a blue plastic pumpkin. And she's started a campaign to encourage parents of other autistic kids to do the same -- so when homeowners see a blue bucket, they'll know they're dealing with a special needs child.
"We love this campaign," says Rachel Brnilovich, an official with the Pennsylvania Autism Action Center. "It really gives our kids an opportunity to go out, no matter their age, and experience Halloween."