‘Sesame Street’ introduces Julia, a muppet character whose autistic, on April 10 [WATCH]

Even as it nears the half-century mark, “Sesame Street” continues to remain relevant. The April 10 episode of this pre-school program will introduce a new muppet character, Julia. She has autism and the “Meet Julia” segment of the show will focus on her first interactions with the long-time residents of the street. Above, watch the introduction of Julia to the cast of characters and see the Emmy-winning writers talk about crafting her personality and puppeteer Stacey Gordon bring her to life.

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“Sesame Street” shifted to HBO in 2016, with episodes rerun later on its long-time home PBS. However, the paycaster is making this landmark episode available to all by posting it on YouTube. The hope is that this new character will help build awareness of autism and the characteristics of behavior often associated with it. As per the press release announcing her introduction, the inclusion of Julia is “designed to reduce stigma and increase awareness and understanding of autism.”

“Sesame Street,” which debuted in 1969, won seven primetime Emmys including four for Best Children’s Program prior to the creation of the Daytime Emmys in 1974. At the Daytime kudos, the program has taken home a staggering 158 trophies (including 30 for a series award of some sort). The show was honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award in 2009.

2017 Daytime Emmy nominations: Full list of nominees

“Sesame Street” has won Best Pre-School Children’s Series a record 20 times since the category was created in 1995. Indeed, it has only lost this race twice (2009 to “Between the Lions” and 2015 to “Dino Dan: Trek’s Adventures”). Do you think “Sesame Street” will defend its title this year.

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