Download AANE’s free wallet card here:
Medical ID Bracelets, Wallet Cards, and Lanyards
Wallet cards can be used in addition to a medical ID bracelet to share information in non-confrontational situations with a healthcare provider at a regular visit or at the emergency room. Police may misinterpret your intentions when you reach for an identification or wallet card. They may make the false assumption that you are reaching for a weapon. Do not reach for any identification or wallet card until a police officer tells you it is ok to do so.
Remember to follow these rules if you are using a wallet card:
- Always ask if you can show the officer your wallet card to explain autism BEFORE you reach for it.
- Tell the officer where your wallet card is and ask again if it is okay to reach for it.
- Do not make any sudden moves when getting your wallet card.
- Practice what you will say to first responders with trusted people.
For first responders: Tips to help interact with autistic individuals.
Many individuals will feel anxious and show behaviors that are not suspicious but are a result of their anxiety (e.g. pacing, talking to self, red face, clenched fists, not making eye contact, walking away).
- Keep your voice calm and talk slowly.
- Don’t ask too many questions at once.
- Allow time for the individual to process what you are saying (count to 30 in your head before repeating the request).
- Do not touch the individual without letting them know what you are going to do.
- Do not require eye contact.
- Ask if there is an emergency contact you can call for the individual.
How to Use the Wallet Card
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