[Note: Shared for #AutisticHistory archive purposes. This is NOT An Autistic Ally.]
Better ABA Care for Military Families Moves in House
June 14, 2013
WASHINGTON, DC (June 14, 2013) — The U.S. House of Representatives has approved an amendment to the new defense bill that would require the Pentagon to cover ABA care for all military families raising children with developmental disabilities, including autism, at medically prescribed levels.
The bipartisan amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) was sponsored by Reps. John Larson (D-CT) and Tom Rooney (R-FL) and approved by voice vote. Although the full NDAA still requires House approval, passage of the ABA amendment was the critical step.
TRICARE, the military’s health plan, covers ABA only for active duty personnel under its ECHO program with benefits capped at $36,000 per year. Military families and their champions in Congress have fought for several years to get uncapped ABA benefits through TRICARE for all military members regardless of their duty status or their branch of service. About 23,000 military dependents have autism.
“Our militaryfamilies have waited too long for a permanent solution to the problems accessing behavioral health treatment under TRICARE,” said Larson. “It’s hard enough being on the battlefield away from home to have the extra burden of worrying about your kids’ care.”
Larson [left] said he first learned of the issue several years ago at an Autism Speaks forum in his district where he met the family of a Connecticut Army National Guard officer whose daughter has autism.
“Telling our troops that their kids can get the treatment they need this year, but maybe not next year, just isn’t good enough,” Rooney [right] said. “How can we expect our troops to re-enlist when we can’t even guarantee that their kids will get health care treatment a year from now? Our troops and their families deserve a long-term assurance that their children will receive the care they need.”
In addition to Rooney and Larson, the issue has been championed by House Armed Services Committee Chairman Buck McKeon (R-CA), Ranking Member Adam Smith (D-WA) and Reps. Joe Courtney (D-CT), Walter Jones (R-NC) and Mike Doyle (D-PA).
A similar ABA amendment was approved by both houses of Congress last year, but in conference committee the provision was rewritten into a one-year pilot program that TRICARE was directed to start by April 2 of this year. TRICARE has yet to start the pilot program, citing budget cuts, and has yet to alert military families or medical providers when it will begin or how it will operate.
The Autism Community Is Not The Autistic Community
More With Autism Votes
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.