Cure Autism Now | GOOD NEWS. More research money from the National Institutes of Health | Feb. 20, 1997 #AutisticHistory

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

IMMEDIATE RELEASE—February 20 1997

GOOD NEWS. More research money from the National Institutes of Health.

Dr. Varmus, Director of the National institutes of Health, allocates extra 4 million dollars for autism in ’97!

Two months ago we asked families to write a letter to the Director of the National Institutes of Health asking for more money to be allocated to biological research in autism. Hundreds of you sent excellent letters and copied your congressmen and senators and we are delighted to report that your efforts worked.

Largely because of this letter writing campaign, the NIH has allocated an extra 4 million dollars this year for autism research. The money is split between three institutes, Child Health, Deafness and Communication and Mental Health. Also, because of family pressure, the NIH has created a coordinating committee of the four institutes that fund autism research so that they can better coordinate their efforts and collaborate instead of compete.

Though we have a long, long way to go with the NIH, we feel that they are making a substantial and sincere effort to make up for years of neglect of autism by the scientific community. We applaud these efforts and we applaud you for helping motivate them to take action.

In particular, we would like to thank Dr. Varmus, Director of The National Institutes of Health, Dr.Duane Alexander the Director of Child Health and Marie Bristol of Child Health, Dr.Steve Hyman, the Director of the Institute of Mental Health , Peter Jenson and Rebecca del Carmen also of Mental Health, and Judith Cooper from Deafness & Communication .They all deserve recognition for their special interest and dedication to helping people with autism. You might want to drop Varmus a note of appreciation. If you do please mail a copy to CAN as well. Varmus’s address is:

Dr. Harold Varmus
Office of the Director
National Institutes of Health
9000 Rockvile Pike
Bldg. 1, room 126
Rockville, Maryland 20892

For years, the scientific community has had very little to offer people with autism and their families, but that time is gone. Recent advances in neuroscience, molecular biology and genetics hold out real hope for progress. We must not be afriad to embrace the scientific community, encourage them and continue to use our power to motivate them. This recent budget increase is a great start, and it happened because of families like us. Keep up the good work.

The following is taken from an NIH document that describes the uses the new money will be put to.

National Institute of Child Health and Development – $2 million

NICHD will use $2,000,000 of the NIH Director’s one percent transfer to fund all or parts of several program project grants (PO1s) on the neurobiology and genetics of autism. These projects were submitted in response to an RFA which sought to increase the methodological rigor of autism research and bring to this area advanced techniques in population genetics and molecular biology, behavioral and cognitive neuroscience, and diagnosis. The applications include gene mapping studies, development of useful animal models based on mutations of candidate genes, studies of genomic control and regulation of neural development, functional magnetic resonance neuroimaging studies, and studies that elucidate gene-environment interactions. The funds provided by the one percent transfer are in addition to funds currently set aside for this RFA by National Institute if Child Health & Development (NICHD) and the National Institute Of Deafness & Communication Disorders (NIDCD.)

National Institute of Mental Health – $1.5 million

Autism is a serious, lifelong developmental disorder with a strong genetic basis. NIMH has significantly invested its resources in studying the genetics of autism as a key strategy in understanding how brain development is altered in this devastating disorder. Identification of the specific genes responsible for autism promises to eventually yield crucial information needed to design effective treatments for autism, as well as generate clues for understanding other neurodevelopmental disorders. Burgeoning genetic technologies and new cooperation among several NIH Institutes has now created unprecedented opportunities to discover the gene that make children vulnerable to autism. The injection of new funds will permit us to greatly increase our efforts to find the relevant genes.

National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders – $0.5 Million

The additional monies assigned to NIDCD under the one percent transfer authority given to the Director, NIH, will be used to support critically important research in autism, a developmental disorder affecting an estimated 400,000 Americans. The mission of NIDCD includes research and research training in hearing, balance, smell, taste, voice, speech, and language. Language impairments have been clearly recognized as primary features of autism. They include language delay and lack of communication skills once language is established, even though such affected children have normal or above normal intelligence. NIDCD is dedicated to supporting research that identifies genes affecting language development, and there is compelling evidence that genetic influence play a major role in the pathogenisis of autism.

Thus in an effort to bring scientists from the various disciplines together to focus their research on this complex disorder, NIDCD joined NICHD in co-sponsoring a solicitation for additional multidisciplinary and collaborative research efforts in the neurobiology and genetics of autism. Following peer review, six of fifteen applications were scored in the outstanding to excellent range, creating a funding requirement beyond the amount set aside for research by the two Institutes. These projects involve research which promises to expand understanding of the genetics of autism, brain organization and functioning, cognitive and language deficits and abilities, and longitudinal development and outcomes. The additional funds from the one percent transfer will permit the NIH to take advantage of immediate opportunities to make significant additional progress in the understanding of autism. 

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.”

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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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