[Note: Shared for #AutisticHistory archive purposes. This is NOT An Autistic Ally.]
MS Autism Insurance Bill Wins First Vote
JACKSON, MS (January 23, 2014) — The Mississippi House Insurance Committee today unanimously approved autism insurance reform legislation that would require coverage of the screening, diagnosis and treatment, including applied behavior analysis (ABA), of autism for state employees and teachers. The vote came as Autism Speaks gave the legislation its endorsement.
Rep. Steve Massengill of Hickory Flat is sponsoring HB.542 in the House of Representatives; Senator Rita Potts Parks of Corinth, who vice chairs the Senate Insurance Committee, introduced the Senate version, SB.2679. The bill moves next to the House Appropriations Committee.
As introduced, the bills would take effect July 1 if enacted. The Mississippi State and School Employees Health Insurance Plan covers 31,000 enrollees.
Shelley Hendrix, Autism Speaks director of grassroots advocacy, celebrates the House Insurance Committee vote with (l to r) Rep. Jody Steverson, parent advocate Quess Hood, Rep. Charles Busby, and the bill sponsor, Rep. Steve Massengill.
“We commend Representative Massengill and Senator Parks for their leadership on behalf of the thousands of Mississippi families dealing with autism,” said Lorri Unumb, Esq., Autism Speaks vice president for state government affairs. ”Autism Speaks is proud to join Mississippi’s autism community in calling on the legislature to approve this legislation so that Mississippi can join the 34 other states that require coverage for medically necessary treatments for autism.”
In addition to ABA treatment, the bill would require coverage for autism-related psychiatric, psychological, pharmaceutical and therapeutic care, such as speech, occupational and physical therapy. The bills set no dollar caps or limits on visits.
“We are thrilled by today’s House Insurance Committee vote,” said Shelley Hendrix, Autism Speaks director of grassroots development. “Families in Mississippi have watched as kids in Louisiana, Arkansas, Florida and 31 other states have gained autism insurance coverage and they are no longer willing to wait. Today’s unanimous vote sends them a strong message.”
Mississippi is one of four southern states considering autism insurance reform legislation this year. Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal last week included autism coverage for state employees and teachers in his state budget proposal; in addition, legislation providing even broader coverage remains before the Legislature. The North Carolina Senate will take up a bill passed 105-7 by the House last year. In Tennessee, autism advocates and representatives from the insurance industry have been negotiating a bill that is scheduled for a hearing Feb. 4 before the House Insurance and Banking Committee.
In addition, autism legislation has been reintroduced in Hawaii and action on bills to expand coverage under existing laws is expected in Kansas and Maine.
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.