For years, families and self-advocates have voiced the need to increase supports and services for people on the Autism Spectrum. New York State
responded to this need by creating the Autism Spectrum Advisory Board.
Recently, the Autism Advisory Board worked with a sub-committee of self-advocates to identify how New York State can enhance supports and services for people living on the spectrum by providing guidance to New York State policymakers, people on the spectrum, and families.
Recommendations of the Autism Board include:
· Increase Collaboration Between State Agencies- Two areas identified was the need for comprehensive care for children and first responders for people with atypical challenges
· Establish Family Support Groups- Understanding that families of children on the spectrum find support in each other, how can NYS best facilitate these connections.
· Increase the Number of Clinical Professionals Serving people with Autism Spectrum Disorder- Training for Professionals, Community Supports, and Collaboration on Research focused around Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA). ABA is a scientific approach to learning and behavior change. ABA has shown to be an effective teaching and therapeutic approach for helping people on the spectrum meet their life goals.
Advocacy is a powerful tool that increases in strength as the number of voices increase. This report is a good example of how advocacy can set the wheels of change in motion. The full report, including self-advocacy feedback, is available here.