Today, The Arc of North Carolina and Proof Alliance NC announced that Governor Roy Cooper has signed a state proclamation recognizing September as Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) Awareness Month. In North Carolina, 56% of women drank alcohol before becoming pregnant and 14% continued drinking during pregnancy. This means an estimated 16,600 babies are born in NC with alcohol exposure each year. In North Carolina, 44% of all pregnancies are unplanned. Studies show that up to 1 in 20 US school children may have an FASD, a rate that is higher than autism.
“It’s important for the public to understand FASD and the dangers of drinking while pregnant,” said Lauren Borchert, Program Coordinator, Proof Alliance NC. “This is a developmental disorder that is 100% preventable.”