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Calls to Action

Government Relations

Do you want to be “ABLE” to save tax-free for the future needs of your child with autism? Then come join Autism Speaks and advocates from 48 other national disability organizations tomorrow in Washington, D.C. for a Capitol Hill briefing on the Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act. The briefing will be held from noon to 1:30 pm in Room B-339 of the Rayburn House Office Building.

NBC correspondent Andrea Mitchell examined the plight of military families raising kids with autism, interviewing military spouse Rachel Kenyon, whose husband has served multiple deployments to Afghanistan, and Peter Bell, Autism Speaks executive vice president for programs and services. On MSNBC's Andrea Mitchell Reports, Kenyon described the difficulties military families encounter in finding services for their children and the disruption caused by multiple deployments.

Military families finally got their say before Congress today about the injustice of losing autism benefits for their children when they retire, even when due to being wounded in action. More than 100 members of the military and their supporters jammed into a Capitol Hill briefing today to talk about the special difficulties military families face caring for children with autism.

The following blog post by an Army Sergeant Major deployed to Afghanistan, who must remain otherwise anonymous, demonstrates vividly the extraordinary challenges faced by our military members raising children with autism. Visit 'Welcome to Stim City' to follow Mrs. Sergeant Major's Blog and to read original post. Military families will finally get a chance to tell their stories to Congress on Tuesday, January 31.

On January 31, military families will get their chance to tell Congress about the special challenges they face raising children with autism.

Many military parents will be in the audience. But many more will be unable to make it to Washington for the briefing. Autism Speaks believes their voices need to be heard as well. We are making it possible for these military families to record a brief story about their experiences and upload it to our YouTube page.

We will share as many of these videos as possible with Congress, including airing portions of them during the meeting.

Happy New Year and welcome to 2012! December was a busy month, with lots of last minute fundraising and grant activity. This month's "impact" post includes updates from across the organization. We hope the holidays were great for you and yours! As usual, this post is filled with top items from last month that we think made an impact for the community.

 

Science

Autism Speaks joined with advocates from the nation’s other leading disability organizations today to make the case before Congress for ABLE—a bill that would allow families raising children with disabilities to save tax-free for their future needs. The briefing was organized by Reps. Ander Crenshaw (R-FL), Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), and Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) all cosponsors of HR.3423, the House version of the Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act.