Washington, D.C. — The National Association of Attorneys General (NAAG) sent a letter to congressional leadership, asking them to authorize the Autism CARES Act of 2019. This legislation provides ongoing federal support for research into autism spectrum disorders (“ASD”) and services to those affected by these conditions.
“According to the Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring Network, one out of every fifty-nine children in America is diagnosed with ASD. Yet, ASD within minority communities tends to be diagnosed less often and much later. Reauthorizing the Autism CARES Act will specifically incentivize ASD programs and research in America’s rural and underdeveloped communities,” reads the letter signed by 47 state and territory attorneys general.
A previous version of this legislation is set to expire on Sept. 30, 2019. The Autism CARES Act of 2019 currently exists as H.R. 1058 in the U.S. House of Representatives and S. 427 in the U.S. Senate. Congress began addressing autism in 2000 with the first enactment of the bill. The 161 cosponsors of the current House and Senate bills and the 118+ bipartisan members of the Congressional Coalition for Autism Research and Education demonstrate its significance.
The letter concludes, “The Autism CARES Act of 2019 will continue Congress’ ongoing mission to ensure that those living with ASD receive the necessary support and research. Therefore, we, the undersigned attorneys general, ask you to support and to enact the Autism CARES Act of 2019 before September 30, 2019.”
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