Mr. DOYLE. Mr. Speaker, May 14 marks the first annual Childhood Apraxia of Speech Day, a day to raise national awareness about Childhood Apraxia of Speech, a particularly difficult, persistent, and severe speech disorder in youngsters.
Childhood Apraxia of Speech (CAS) causes children to have extreme difficulty planning and producing the precise, highly refined and specific series of movements of the tongue, lips, jaw, and palate that are necessary for the production of proper speech. It is among the most severe of speech and communication problems in children.
While the act of learning to speak comes effortlessly to most children, those with apraxia endure an incredible and lengthy struggle. Although not life threatening it is life altering as families are left to cope with the emotional, physical, and financial challenges of having a child diagnosed with CAS.
Every child should be afforded their best opportunity to develop speech. With early intervention and appropriate therapy, most children with CAS will learn to communicate with their very own voices. These children, as well as their families, deserve our highest respect for their effort, determination and resilience in the face of such obstacles.
The Childhood Apraxia of Speech Association of North America (CASANA) offers information and support related to CAS on its website, www.apraxia-kids.org.
Let's use Childhood Apraxia Day to raise awareness about CAS and support the goals of Better Hearing and Speech Month.