Cure Autism Now and Autism Speaks Announce Plans to Combine Operations
Merger of Leading Autism Organizations Will Lead to Enhanced Research, Treatment and Advocacy Programs
(NEW YORK, NY – November 29, 2006) – Autism Speaks and Cure Autism Now (CAN) have signed a memorandum of understanding to combine operations, uniting the nation’s two leading autism organizations and their cutting-edge programs for research, biomedical treatment and advocacy.
The merger was announced today by Mark Roithmayr, president of Autism Speaks, and Peter Bell, president and chief executive officer of CAN. Due diligence and final board approvals are expected to be concluded by February 1, 2007. The consolidated organization will be known as Autism Speaks, Inc.
The consolidation of the two non-profit organizations will provide the scale necessary to respond to the crisis of autism, the nation’s fastest-growing developmental disorder. Both groups share a commitment to accelerate and fund biomedical research into the causes, prevention, treatments and cure for autism spectrum disorders; to increase awareness of the disorder; and to improve the quality of life of affected individuals and their families.
“Autism Speaks and Cure Autism Now believe that a combined organization will attract more resources and facilitate large-scale research, while providing the funding necessary to launch planned clinical and quality-of-life programs. A single entity will foster collaboration among the best scientific minds and most dedicated advocates.
“This is how we will reach our common mission — finding a cure for autism,” said Bell and Roithmayr in a joint statement.
“Since their founding, Autism Speaks and CAN have committed more than $80 million to autism research and education, established scientific resources, promoted awareness and led federal advocacy efforts,” said Bob Wright, co-founder and board chairman of Autism Speaks.
“During the past year, we have worked closely with CAN on critical issues facing the autism community, and now we will truly be able to combine our efforts and passions toward our common goals.”
“When we started CAN ten years ago, they told us you can’t hurry science,” said Jonathan Shestack, co-founder of Cure Autism Now.
“But with an extraordinary group of committed families and scientists we created a field from scratch and proved that, indeed, you can hurry science. In this next chapter, with Autism Speaks, we intend to move further and faster.”
Autism spectrum disorders are diagnosed in one in 166 children, with four times as many boys than girls affected. Autism has increased tenfold in the last decade. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have called autism a national public health crisis.
The combined organization will maintain both Cure Autism Now’s and Autism Speaks’ national walk programs and professional staffs. The scientific research processes, advisory boards and protocols of each entity will be integrated and flagship CAN programs, including the Autism Genetic Resource Exchange (AGRE), Autism Treatment Network (ATN), Clinical Trials Network (CTN) and Innovative Technology for Autism (ITA), will be expanded.
CURE AUTISM NOW
Cure Autism Now is an organization of parents, clinicians and leading scientists accelerating research to prevent, treat and cure autism – for individuals and families today, and for future generations. Cure Autism Now is a leading private funder of biomedical research in autism, providing more than $35 million for research grants, education, outreach and scientific resources. Cure Autism Now has chapters across the country with national headquarters in Los Angeles. More information about Cure Autism Now can be found at www.cureautismnow.org.
ABOUT AUTISM SPEAKS
Autism Speaks is dedicated to increasing awareness of the growing autism epidemic and to raising money to fund scientists who are searching for a cure. The organization was founded in February 2005 by Suzanne and Bob Wright. Bob Wright is Vice Chairman and Executive Officer, General Electric, and Chairman and CEO, NBC Universal. Autism Speaks and the National Alliance for Autism Research (NAAR) combined operations in February 2006, bringing together two of the leading organizations dedicated to accelerating and funding biomedical research into the causes, prevention, treatments and cure for autism spectrum disorders; to increasing awareness of the nation’s fastest growing developmental disorder; and to advocating for the needs of affected families. To learn more about Autism Speaks, please visit www.autismspeaks.org
Autistic people have fought the inclusion of ABA in therapy for us since before Autism Speaks, and other non-Autistic-led autism organizations, started lobbying legislation to get it covered by insurances and Medicaid.
ABA is a myth originally sold to parents that it would keep their Autistic child out of an institution. Today, parents are told that with early intervention therapy their child will either be less Autistic or no longer Autistic by elementary school, and can be mainstreamed in typical education classes. ABA is very expensive to pay out of pocket. Essentially, Autism Speaks has justified the big price tag up front will offset the overall burden on resources for an Autistic’s lifetime. The recommendation for this therapy is 40 hours a week for children and toddlers.
The original study that showed the success rate of ABA to be at 50% has never been replicated. In fact, the study of ABA by United States Department of Defense was denounced as a failure. Not just once, but multiple times. Simply stated: ABA doesn’t work. In study after repeated study: ABA (conversion therapy) doesn’t work.
What more recent studies do show: Autistics who experienced ABA therapy are at high risk to develop PTSD and other lifelong trauma-related conditions. Historically, the autism organizations promoting ABA as a cure or solution have silenced Autistic advocates’ opposition. ABA is also known as gay conversion therapy.
The ‘cure’ for Autistics not born yet is the prevention of birth.
The ‘cure’ is a choice to terminate a pregnancy based on ‘autism risk.’ The cure is abortion. This is the same ‘cure’ society has for Down Syndrome.
This is eugenics 2021. Instead of killing Autistics and disabled children in gas chambers or ‘mercy killings’ like in Aktion T4, it’ll happen at the doctor’s office, quietly, one Autistic baby at a time. Different approaches yes, but still eugenics and the extinction of an entire minority group of people.
Fact: You can’t cure Autistics from being Autistic.
Fact: You can’t recover an Autistic from being Autistic.
Fact: You can groom an Autistic to mask and hide their traits. Somewhat. … however, this comes at the expense of the Autistic child, promotes Autistic Burnout (this should not be confused with typical burnout, Autistic Burnout can kill Autistics), and places the Autistic child at high risk for PTSD and other lifelong trauma-related conditions.
[Note: Autism is NOT a disease, but a neurodevelopmental difference and disability.]
Fact: Vaccines Do Not Cause Autism.