“Wednesday is TS Day” in Somerville

Mayor Brian Gallagher joins NJ Center for Tourette Syndrome’s advocacy campaign in support of the 1 in 100 individuals with Tourette Syndrome.

April 22, 2010 – The stigma attached to Tourette Syndrome is not welcome in Somerville.

Mayor Brian Gallagher joined other political leaders throughout the state in support of the Wednesday is TS Day campaign today. Gallagher’s proclamation directly acknowledges and congratulates the efforts of the New Jersey Center for Tourette Syndrome (NJCTS) which offers support services, medical referrals and the world’s first Tourette Syndrome DNA repository.

Wednesday is TS Day is a public awareness campaign designed to empower families dealing with Tourette Syndrome and associated neurological disorders like ADHD, OCD, learning disorders, depression and rage; combat stigma; and help parents, teachers and medical professionals develop a deeper understanding of the signs and symptoms of TS. Government statistics show 1 in 100 individuals exhibit signs of TS. That’s 28,000 in New Jersey alone!

The Wednesday is TS Day campaign is a two-fold effort to create understanding: TS families are encouraged to share their perspective and the general public is challenged to open their minds to the facts of this neurological disorder.

“By recognizing our Wednesday is TS Day! effort, Somerville leaders are taking a proactive step in standing up for adequate healthcare for the under-served, expanding public and professional acceptance as well as support a safe-haven for this vulnerable population,” said NJCTS Executive Director Faith Rice, “This proclamation and support of Wednesday is TS Day speaks volumes to the importance of fair treatment to those with mental health issues and access to quality healthcare for all New Jersey residents. We’re so pleased we could work together to put TS at the center of these important issues.”

Mayor Gallagher is joining a growing number of lawmakers standing up to raise Tourette Syndrome awareness, and this latest proclamation echoes the efforts of Congressman Albio Sires (D-NJ), Newark Mayor Cory Booker, State Senators Christopher “Kip” Bateman and Richard Codey, and the mayors of Trenton, Camden, Wildwood and Pequannock to establish every Wednesday as a of advocacy on behalf of TS.

To learn more about the groundbreaking work by NJCTS at local hospitals, schools and research facilities- please visit www.njcts.org.

Background: Tourette Syndrome is a neurological disorder most frequently characterized by involuntary motor or vocal movements known as tics. As many as 1 in 100 express symptoms of TS. For as many as 90% of people with TS, it’s accompanied by other conditions like obsessive-compulsive and attention deficit disorders, learning disabilities, anxiety and depression. TS usually appears in childhood, affecting more boys than girls. Without proper treatment and support, TS can have a debilitating effect on a child’s ability to learn and become self-sufficient.

New Jersey Center for Tourette Syndrome is a collaboration among the Tourette Syndrome Association of New Jersey, Rutgers University and healthcare professionals throughout the state to provide referrals for comprehensive diagnostic and treatment services, training opportunities for medical and school professionals as well as coordinated services for families. NJCTS established the world’s first Tourette Syndrome DNA Sharing Repository at Rutgers University which will lead researchers to understand more about this puzzling disorder- leading someday to better treatments and even a cure. NJCTS has made New Jersey the epicenter of exciting bio-research.

For more information, or to schedule an interview please call 908-575-7350.