The Upper Saddle River Department announces a new program to help people with Autism Spectrum Disorder during a traffic stop. It’s called the Blue Envelope Program.
Being pulled over by a police officer can make anyone anxious. But for someone with Autism Spectrum Disorder, it can cause an even greater issue, between the heightened situation, the flashing lights, the sounds of radios, and other noises. That’s why the Upper Saddle River Police Department started a Blue Envelope Program. We are trying to avoid any misunderstandings between our officers and drivers that have Autism Spectrum Disorder.
If someone with Autism Spectrum Disorder gets pulled over, the driver shows the blue envelope. The driver will keep their driver’s license, vehicle registration, vehicle insurance, and an emergency contact card inside the blue envelope. The outside of the blue envelope contains instructions for the driver, like keeping hands on the wheel, the officer may shine their flashlight in the car and the police car may have flashing lights. On the reverse side of the envelope, it tells the officers what to do, like simplifying requests and if the driver becomes upset contact a person on the emergency contact card. A checked off box will also indicate whether the driver is verbal or nonverbal.
If you or a loved one would like to participate in the Blue Envelope Program, please come to the Upper Saddle River Police Department located at 368 West Saddle River Road or call our main number (201) 327-2700 and an officer will drop off your blue envelope.