Autism Speaks Applauds West Virginia House Members For Passing Autism Insurance Reform Legislation | Feb. 11, 2011 #AutisticHistory #BanABA


[Note: Shared for #AutisticHistory archive purposes. This is NOT An Autistic Ally.]

Autism Speaks Applauds West Virginia House Members For Passing Autism Insurance Reform Legislation

West Virginia House Passes House Bill 2693, Legislation That Will Help End Discrimination Against Children With Autism 

NEW YORK, NY (February 11, 2011) — Autism Speaks yesterday joined West Virginia families and other autism advocacy organizations in applauding the members of the House for their passage of House Bill 2693, which requires insurance companies to provide coverage of evidence-based, medically necessary autism therapies, such as applied behavior analysis (ABA). The bill passed with only one dissent in a vote of 96 to 1 and has been referred to the Senate for consideration.

Sponsored in the West Virginia House by Delegate Barbara Evans Fleischauer (District 44 – Monongalia), HB 2693 would end private insurance companies’ discrimination against children with autism by requiring coverage of evidence-based, medically-necessary therapies, including Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) therapy. HB 2693 includes a maximum benefit for ABA therapy of $30,000 annually for the first three consecutive years after diagnosis and a maximum benefit of $2,000 monthly thereafter until the individual reaches age 18. A companion bill, Senate Bill 218, has been introduced in the State Senate by Senator Evan H. Jenkins (District 5 – Cabell) and Acting Senate President Jeffrey V. Kessler (District 2 – Marshall).

“Autism Speaks applauds the members of the West Virginia House for passing HB 2693, which will extend a helping hand to families that have been financially devastated by the lack of insurance coverage for necessary autism therapies,” said Peter Bell, Autism Speaks executive vice president of programs and services. “We are grateful for the leadership of Delegate Fleischauer on this issue and now call on the Senate to follow suit, allowing West Virginia to join the ranks of states that have recognized the unfair and unreasonable burden being imposed on families of children with autism.” 

“Passage of this bill gives hope to thousands of West Virginia families whose children need access to ABA in order to live a productive life,” said Delegate Fleichauer. “The next step is to gain passage in the Senate and get the best deal we can for a combined version of the bill.” 

To date, twenty-three states – Arizona, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Texas, Vermont, and Wisconsin – have enacted autism insurance reform legislation. Several other state legislatures will introduce similar legislation during the current 2011 session.

“We are so appreciative of all of our Delegates who voted in favor of HB 2693 and that we are one step closer to making this a reality for the children of West Virginia with autism who so badly need appropriate access to medical treatments and therapies,” said Jill Scarbro-McLaury, Autism Speaks West Virginia Chapter Advocacy Chair and lead volunteer in this effort. “Passing this legislation would also help us retain the bright, young behavior analysts that West Virginia has become so well known for educating instead of losing them to surrounding states that have already achieved this initiative.”


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 workIn 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.

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