New Mexico | Autism Politics, News & History

New Mexico | Autism Politics, Divergent News & History

New Mexico became the 9th state to enact autism insurance reform on April 2, 2009.

The reform forced insurance providers to cover Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA). ABA is known as Autistic Conversion Therapy in the Autistic Community. 

The Autism Votes initiative was powered by Autism Speaks and other non-Autistic parent-founded autism organizations.

The ’autism community’ referenced in articles here is a different community than the Autistic community. The ’autism community’ prevented Autistics from participating in legislation, Autistic healthcare initiatives and more in a meaningful manner. Instead, Autistics are used as a prop or token in these initiatives. 

Autism Insurance Reform that included ABA was being protested by Autistics as it was being hailed by non-Autistics in the ’autism community.’ These non-Autistic parent-founded organizations and people didn’t listen to Autistics then, and they aren’t listening now.  

When this legislation was implemented, Autistics were silenced in the national conversation, and our civil, human and disabled rights circumvented or denied. 

Today, in every state, Autistics and our real allies are working hard to introduce legislation to get ABA banned.

We will be heard. 


New Mexico Legislative History

Autism Speaks Applauds New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson for Enacting Autism Insurance Reform Bill (April 3, 2009)

Autism Speaks Joins the New Mexico Autism Community In Applauding State Legislators for Passing Autism Insurance Legislation (March 20, 2009) 

Autism Insurance Reform Bill is Passed by the New Mexico State Senate in Unanimous Vote (February 9, 2009)

Autism Speaks Endorses New Mexico Autism Insurance Reform Bills (February 3, 2009)

Summary of Autism Insurance Reform Law Passed in New Mexico (2009 & 2011) 


Autism Politics

New Mexico enacted autism insurance reform on April 2, 2009


Legislation: SB 39HB 155, 

People: Bill Richardson, Gay FinlaysonClinton D. HardenJoni Marie Gutierrez 


Bill History

April 2, 2009: Governor Bill Richardson has signed SB 39 into law, making NM the ninth state in the country with comprehensive autism insurance reform.

March 20, 2009: SB 39 passes on the House floor in a vote of 51-15.  The bill now goes to the Governor for signature into law. NM becomes the 9th state in the country to pass autism insurance reform.

March 17, 2009: State House Appropriations & Finance Committee passes SB 39 in a vote of 8-3.  The bill now heads to the House floor.

March 16, 2009: State House Business & Industry Committee holds hearing on SB 39.  Bill is passed in a vote of 10-1 and referred to the Appropriations & Finance Committee for review.

March 3, 2009: State House Health & Government Affairs Committee holds hearing on SB 39.  Bill is passed by Committee in vote of 6-0

February 9, 2009:  SB 39 passed by the New Mexico State Senate in a vote of 36-0.  Bill amended on the senate floor. Bill is referred to House for review.

February 5, 2009: State Senate Corporations & Transportation Committee holds hearing on SB 39.  The bill is passed in a vote of 10 to 0.  

Janurary 30, 2009: State Senate Public Affairs Committee holds hearing on SB 39.  The bill is passed in a vote of 5 to 0.  The bill is amended in Committee.

January 22, 2009: Autism insurance reform bill, House Bill 155, introduced in the New Mexico State House by Representative Joni Marie Gutierrez.

Janurary 13, 2009: Autism insurance reform bill, Senate Bill 39, introduced in the New Mexico State Senate by State Senator Clinton D. Harden. 


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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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