First Responders

Training for First Responders

Since November 2022, over 225 Delaware first responders from more than 55 Delaware agencies and departments have participated in DNEA’s award-winning first responder training. Presented by Retired Lieutenant Chuck Sawchenko, this specialized 3-hour training for law enforcement officers and first responders primarily focuses on those with patrol responsibilities. Through lectures, interactive learning, and video-based scenarios, participants learn about autism and other developmental disabilities from a law enforcement and family perspective. We welcome individual departments and agencies to request our training during their training academies and scheduled in-services. Click here to request training for your department. ➡️


DNEA First Responder Program Wins Compassionate Champion Award! 

The DNEA is proud to announce that its First Responder Training Program was selected to receive a 2024 Compassionate Champion Award in the first responder category. The award was presented on May 7th on behalf of the Family Services Cabinet Council, Trauma Matters Delaware, and the Office of Governor Carney to recognize exceptional trauma-informed care provided by individuals and organizations in Delaware. A first responder who is sensitive and understands the nature of autism is better equipped to bring about positive changes for individuals with autism and their families.


NEW! Practice Traffic Stop Program for Autistic Drivers and Passengers

The DNEA offers a practice traffic stop program for autistic drivers and passengers. In this program, autistic drivers and passengers work with the police in a safe, friendly space to simulate a live traffic stop. Click here for current event dates and more information and resources related to this program.



Contact DNEA Program Coordinator Katie Booz via email ( or phone (302-831-8903).