Public Policy Guide

Pathfinders for Autism is a tax-exempt charitable organization under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code and, as such, our political and legislative (lobbying) activities are restricted accordingly. However, in our efforts to provide information and resources, to promote autism awareness, and serve as a catalyst for autism related issues across the State, we do keep our finger on the pulse of policy initiatives and changes that may affect individuals with autism and their families in Maryland. Pathfinders for Autism is often called upon by our partners to support policy initiatives through education and public testimony when they directly impact the autism and developmental disability community in Maryland.

Pathfinders for Autism worked with a local grassroots coalition of disability advocacy organizations and individuals with disabilities to support legislation during the 2015 and 2016 Legislative Sessions to establish an ABLE program in the State.  The  Maryland ABLE is projected to be operational in Fall of 2017.?  

Learn more about Maryland ABLE.

Pathfinders for Autism worked with Autism Speaks and a local grassroots coalition of developmental disability advocacy organizations and individuals to improve Maryland families’ access to meaningful insurance coverage for autism treatment. Maryland lawmakers approved a Bill in 2012 requiring that coverage for autism treatment be clarified by regulators under Maryland's existing Habilitative Services Mandate. The regulation was finalized in March 2014. 

Learn more about autism insurance in Maryland.  

Early Detection & Screening
In 2004, Pathfinders for Autism was instrumental in the introduction and passage of Maryland's House Bill 579/Senate Bill 834 during the 2004-05 legislative session. The bill authorized the Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE) to operate a three-year pilot program that will identify best practices and train 30 pediatricians in developmental screening methods.

Summary of House Bill 579/Senate Bill 834

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