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Advocacy update from ASA June 2014

The House Energy & Commerce Committee approved the Combating Autism Act (CAA) on June 10 by a unanimous vote. The bill largely extends the research, surveillance, public awareness and professional training activities under the Combating Autism Act for an additional five years.

The House Energy & Commerce Committee approved the Combating Autism Act (CAA) on June 10 by a unanimous vote. The bill largely extends the research, surveillance, public awareness and professional training activities under the Combating Autism Act for an additional five years.

The bill includes the following provisions:  

  1. Increases the minimum required number of self-advocates on the Interagency Autism Coordinating Council from one to two.
  2. Requires the Federal Department of Health and Human Services to conduct a study of services, efforts and demographics related to transition and adult services.
  3. Requires the Department of Health and Human Services to create a position to oversee coordination of the federal government’s response to issues and service needs related to autism.
  4. Provides yearly funding from 2015 to 2019 for research, training and other efforts.

Also, Sens. Menendez, D-N.J., and Enzi, R-WY, introduced Senate bill 2449, titled the Autism CARES Act. The Autism Society of America has been instrumental in working with Congress to identify improvements to the bill and urges the House and Senate to work in a bicameral, bipartisan fashion to move this bill quickly and not let the law expire on Sept. 30, 2014