Julia the autistic muppet has just debuted on Sesame Street

And it's really heartwarming

There are, on average, around 700,000 people in the UK living with autism right now and although the spectrum condition tends to affect more men than it does women, there are still girls with autism, too.

So, the world rejoiced when educational kids show Sesame Street, which launched in 1969, debuted their first ever muppet with autism on TV this week – which acts as a huge step for diversity across media.

In Julia’s first ever episode, we see Big Bird get confused after he is seemingly ignored by Julia, before the show’s presenter explains what autism is.

Parents of autistic children often express that people assume their child is naughty when they act up but as autistic people see, hear and feel the world differently, any erratic behaviour is rather a display of their experience of the world.

It’s common practice for people with autism to avoid eye contact and to not intuitively know how to communicate and interact with others (as well as having difficulty reading other people) but after Big Bird understands Julia’s condition more, the pair are able to build a rapport and start a friendship.

According to a survey recorded by YouGov, 65% of Brits think Julia’s introduction to the series is a good idea, and considering that it the show runners researched the condition for over five years in order to bring her to life, we think so too.

It’s rare to have such an accurate portrayal of a character with autism in pop culture and to introduce the spectrum to children and raise awareness of the condition is sheer genius if you ask us.

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