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Several Palm Springs restaurants become Certified Autism Centers

FARM, Tac/Quila, Front Porch and Clandestino are now Certified Autism Centers (CAC). 

The Palm Springs restaurants were awarded this designation after the owners, Liz and Mark Ostoich, and the majority of their employees received autism-awareness training from the International Board of Credentialing and Continuing Education Standards (IBCCES.) 

“We had over 80 percent of the front of house staff do autism certification training so that they can be more aware of cognitive issues and just be more thoughtful when people come in that may have special needs,” said Liz Ostoich. 

The designation means that staff are educated about autism and can better accommodate people on the spectrum at all four restaurants.

People on the spectrum and their families can now call ahead to pre-pay for their meals to “streamline their stay”, request alternative seating options in low-sensory areas and anti-stimulant or stimulant aids like fidget spinners. 

This credentialing is apart of a community-wide effort, led by Visit Greater Palm Springs, to make the Coachella Valley a Certified Autism Destination (CAD)

According to Josh Heinz with Visit Greater Palm Springs, a valley-wide designation would make entertainment, lodging, recreational and dining options accessible for all. 

“We want to continue to grow the initiative. Because again, imagine if we grow the initiative so much that we get 20,000 employees across the valley that learn about autism, it makes our Valley more welcoming for those on the spectrum and it makes our community stronger and makes our community be a safer place for those on the spectrum,” said Josh Heinz, Visit Greater Palm Springs.

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Tatum Larsen


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