Autism Speaks Withdraws Endorsement of Alabama Autism Insurance Reform Bill | April 10, 2011 #AutisticHistory #BanABA


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

Autism Speaks Withdraws Endorsement of Alabama Autism Insurance Reform Bill

April 10, 2011

NEW YORK (April 10, 2012) — Autism Speaks announced that it is withdrawing its endorsement of Alabama’s autism insurance reform legislation, as a result of a newly introduced substitute bill that would provide little or no relief to parents paying tens of thousands of dollars a year for critical treatments. Autism Speaks will continue to work with local advocates, including the Autism Society of Alabama, on pursuing meaningful legislation.

“This is a solution in name only,” said Lorri Unumb, Autism Speaks’ vice president for state government affairs. “The problem with this new proposal is that it doesn’t require coverage, but requires only that insurers ‘offer’ the benefit, meaning that the cost will not be spread over the entire insurance pool. Under the new proposal, which was crafted by the insurance industry, Alabama families are not guaranteed anything.

“After working hard with Alabama advocates to join 30 other states that have banned autism insurance discrimination, we regret that we must now withdraw our support,” she said.

Unumb was responding to an 11th-hour substitute bill for SB.283 introduced in the Alabama Senate that embraces the “mandated offering” concept. Rather than requiring insurers to cover autism screening, diagnosis and evidence-based therapies, such as Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA), mandated offering laws only require insurers to “offer” the coverage and then charge an additional or higher premium if the policyholder accepts.
The original Alabama legislation endorsed by Autism Speaks would bar large group health insurance plans in Alabama from refusing to cover the diagnosis and treatment of treatment of autism. The original Senate bill (SB 283) would provide coverage for children through age 9; the original House bill (HB 345) would provide coverage through age 18. ABA treatments would have been covered for up to $50,000 a year.

Autism Speaks has worked with local advocates across the nation to ban autism insurance discrimination in 30 states. The Michigan legislature just enacted such legislation which Gov. Rick Snyder is expected to sign next week.

The Autism Community Is Not The Autistic Community

* The “autism community” is not the Autistic Community. The autism community was created by non-Autistic led organizations and includes mostly parents, professionals and their friends. Most of what the world knows about autism is sourced from the non-Autistic “autism community.”


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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