Report of the Massachusetts Special Commission Relative to Autism

Michael and Dave at the State House


Yesterday, a formal ceremony in the Massachusetts State House made public a report by the Massachusetts Special Commission Relative to Autism, more commonly known as “The Autism Commission.”

The picture here was taken after the event by Dania Jekel, Executive Director of AANE, showing Dave Harmon and me outside the State House. Dave and I are Board members at AANE. Dave served as co-chair of the Adult Services subcommittee of the Commission. Dania and I, as well as AANE Board member Dan Rosenn, served as Commissioners.

Although the report was formally published yesterday, its recommendations had been made available earlier in the year, and two months ago AANE collaborated with the Disability Law Center, the Arc of Massachusetts, and others to file two bills designed to implement the top priorities of the Commission.

House Bill 78 (and identical Senate Bill 908) seeks to expand eligibility for services provided by the Massachusetts Department of Developmental Services to include more people with developmental disabilities.

Senate Bill 909 (and identical House Bill 1794) would require the Department of Mental Health to provide services to people with an autism diagnosis, if needed.

An Executive Summary of the report lists all the top priority recommendations on its last page.

The full report is 174 pages long.

An abbreviated version contains 62 pages.

All of this information is provided by me in my personal capacity, and is not meant to imply an endorsement by the Commission, AANE, or any other organization. I am interested in promoting dialog about the issues raised in this report, and would welcome comments here on my blog.


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