Mesa Parks and Recreation receives autism-certified designation

May 30, 2019, 10:31 AM

PHOENIX — The Mesa Parks Recreation and Community Facilities Department has made a bit of history.

It became the first such department in the world to receive an autism-certified designation, the department announced Wednesday.

The designation, which demonstrates the organization’s commitment to ensuring guests with autism and sensory sensitivities have the best possible experience, comes from the International Board of Credentialing and Continuing Education Standards.

“Mesa is well known as a destination for families to both live and visit,” Mesa Mayor John Giles said in a press release. “I am proud that our Parks, Recreation and Community Facilities Department took that priority a step further to ensure that children on the autism spectrum have a fun experience in Mesa.”

Around 500 employees of the department completed awareness and sensitivity training. IBCCES also conducted an onsite review of numerous parks and facilities.

“The training our staff has undergone highlights our commitment to making sure our programs and activities are inclusive to all in the community,” Mesa Parks, Recreation and Community Facilities director Marc Heirshberg said in a press release.

“The training has made us more aware of how to effectively provide our services to people with autism.”

The training wasn’t only for parks and recreation employees. Members of Visit Mesa and the Mesa Chamber of Commerce also took part.

“It’s exciting to partner with an organization that is so committed to inclusion and has done so much amazing work in their community to ensure everyone has options,” IBCCES board chairman Myron Pincomb said in a press release.

“We partner with industry leaders from around the world, and the team in Mesa is no exception – the work they have put into the IBCCES program and their public spaces is above and beyond!”

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

A 4-year-old boy died after being pulled from a pool. (Pexels Photo)...

4-year-old boy dead after being pulled from Mesa pool

A four-year-old boy has died after he was pulled from a pool in Mesa on Monday evening, according to the Mesa Police Department.

3 hours ago

Democratic Rep. Greg Stanton announced the $1.75 million that will support two water infrastructure...

Serena O'Sullivan

Mesa announces $1.75 million federal investment in 2 water infrastructure projects

The federal government allocated almost $2 million to support Mesa water services, Rep. Greg Stanton announced during a Monday press event.

4 hours ago

A 3-year-old girl reportedly died after being pulled from a pool Tuesday afternoon at a north Phoen...

5-year-old boy in critical condition after being found in Phoenix pool

A five-year-old boy is in critical condition after a drowning incident in an apartment pool in Phoenix on Monday evening, authorities said.

5 hours ago

Arizona judge declares mistrial in case of rancher who shot migrant...

Associated Press

Arizona judge declares mistrial in the case of a rancher accused of fatally shooting a migrant

An Arizona judge declared a mistrial in the case of rancher accused of killing a Mexican man on his property near the U.S.-Mexico border.

7 hours ago

miniDunes golf course in Maricopa adds LED lights for nighttime...

6-hole golf course in Maricopa adds lights for night play

MiniDunes, a golf course in Maricopa's Ak-Chin Southern Dunes Golf Club, now has 15 poles with 88 LED light fixtures for nighttime games.

8 hours ago

A solar installer works on the roof of a home in Frankfort, Ky., July 17, 2023. Arizona received a ...

Kevin Stone

Arizona gets $156.12 million grant from federal Solar For All program on Earth Day

The Biden administration gave Arizona a nice Earth Day present in the form of a $156.12 million grant from the Solar For All program.

9 hours ago

Sponsored Articles


DISC Desert Institute for Spine Care

Sciatica pain is treatable but surgery may be required

Sciatica pain is one of the most common ailments a person can face, and if not taken seriously, it could become one of the most harmful.


Collins Comfort Masters

Here’s 1 way to ensure your family is drinking safe water

Water is maybe one of the most important resources in our lives, and especially if you have kids, you want them to have access to safe water.


Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Day & Night is looking for the oldest AC in the Valley

Does your air conditioner make weird noises or a burning smell when it starts? If so, you may be due for an AC unit replacement.

Mesa Parks and Recreation receives autism-certified designation