Autism Speaks Denounces Arizona Legislation That Would End Insurance Coverage For Autism Diagnosis and Treatment, Devastating Families Across the State | April 15, 2011 #AutisticHistory #BanABA


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

Autism Speaks Denounces Arizona Legislation That Would End Insurance Coverage For Autism Diagnosis and Treatment, Devastating Families Across the State

(April 15, 2011) – Autism Speaks, the nation’s largest autism science and advocacy organization, today denounced the Arizona legislature’s passage of a bill that would essentially repeal enacted autism insurance reform legislation and force hundreds of families to once again pay tens of thousands of dollars a year out-of-pocket for critical autism diagnoses and treatments — even though they already have health insurance coverage. The organization called on the entire autism community, nationwide, to contact Governor Jan Brewer’s office and urge her to veto the legislation.

Senate Bill 1593 allows employers to purchase health plans outside of Arizona, thereby using plans that do not have to follow Arizona’s insurance laws. An amendment to the bill waives Arizona’s 32 existing insurance mandates, including the requirement that insurers cover autism treatments. Arizona would become the first state to repeal autism insurance reform legislation. West Virginia recently became the 25th state to enact such legislation, and several other states have bills pending.

“This legislation is a slap in the face to thousands of Arizona families who are paying for health insurance coverage, but will be denied the very services they need the most,” said Peter Bell, Autism Speaks executive vice president of programs and services. “If this legislation becomes law, many families will face impossible decisions – from taking out second and third mortgages to emptying siblings’ college funds – to provide their children with treatments they need and deserve. Or, they simply may be forced to abandon therapies altogether. Everyone who is outraged by this legislation should email ( or call Governor Brewer at (602) 542-4331 and tell her to veto this bill immediately.”

Arizona’s “Steven’s Law,” enacted in 2008, requires insurers to cover up to $50,000 a year for Applied Behavior Analysis therapy for children until age nine, and $25,000 a year for children until age sixteen. It covers therapy for children whose diagnoses reflect the full range of the autism spectrum. Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is recognized by the American Academy of Pediatrics and the U.S. Surgeon General, among others, as an effective, evidence-based treatment for children with autism.

“The therapy provided under Steven’s law has given hope back to our family and allowed us to look forward to our son being a productive and contributing member of the community someday,” said Melissa Shah, a Phoenix parent. “My child has been receiving these services for over a year and his development has improved dramatically. Losing this insurance coverage would be catastrophic for him.”

In many states, health insurance policies explicitly exclude coverage of these therapies , placing a significant financial burden on families seeking to provide their children with necessary services.


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.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: