[Note: Shared for #AutisticHistory archive purposes. This is NOT An Autistic Ally.]
Autism Champions: 10 Years of Advocating for Families
March 03, 2015
Our 10 Years of Progress at Autism Speaks would not have been possible without the key contributions of our policy makers who’ve helped us pass key legislation for our autism families. Read about our 10 Advocacy Accomplishments here.
One of those contributions was The Achieving a Better Life Experience Act (ABLE Act) which was signed into law by President Obama on December 19, 2014, following a bipartisan vote in the Senate earlier that week. The signing culminated an eight-year campaign to gain approval for tax-free savings accounts to help individuals and families finance their longterm disability needs.
The ABLE Act is built on the foundation of the current 529 Education Savings Plans that help families save for college. The National Disability Institute estimates there are 58 million individuals with disabilities in the United States.
This bill was helped through the support of The National Down Syndrome Society (NDSS) and other advocacy groups. The bill was renamed in honor of Steve Beck, a former Board member of NDSS and driving force behind the bill who died suddenly in early December. We discussed more about the legacy Beck left behind on our website here.