Yes I have grown a bit cynical when it comes to government funded research.
NAA and SafeMinds are more optomistic.
From NAA and SafeMinds
Combating Autism Act Passes in the House
We’re pleased to announce the passage of the Combating Autism Act, approved earlier today by a House vote of 2/3's majority. The next step for the CAA is back to the Senate for deliberations on the House-approved version of the bill. We don’t anticipate problems there, but will be watching the discussions closely.
The main goal of NAA and SafeMinds in staying engaged in the legislative process was to obtain a directive for investigation of environmental factors, including vaccines and their preservatives, in the development of autism. Having achieved that goal, the next phase of securing appropriations for the bill will be difficult given the intense competition for funding. The war continues to deplete our nation’s financial resources, with current costs at approximately $5 billion a week according to government contacts.
As long as the legislative path for this bill seems already, it is clear that much work lies ahead in ensuring that the authorization for environmental research is appropriately funded. We will need the assistance of all who believe as we do that this area must be pursued if our kids are going to get the help they need. Soon, NAA and SM will be sending out action alerts on how the community can help us in our campaign with the Appropriations Committee.
With the passage of the CAA, we now have federal legislation that acknowledges the urgency of addressing the health care crisis of autism, the need for intensification and expansion of research into treatments and a cure (most importantly, the investigation of environmental factors relative to autism) and the need for community oversight among these critical research areas. We see this as a landmark event for our loved ones.
We thank everyone who has stood with us during this process. Parents, family members, and friends were instrumental in answering our action alerts by keeping up the pressure with their phone calls and letters to include the environmental provisions, treatment options, and critical oversight language. We are convinced that these collective efforts will make a positive difference for all children diagnosed with autism. Also, our heartfelt thanks go to Don and Deirdre Imus who steadfastly remained at the table on behalf of our kids, even without having a “dog in this fight”, as Mr. Imus would say. This is not an easy cause to champion, and we are heartened by their courage and devotion in doing the right thing for our children. By lending their support, they gave all of our children voices. We will be forever grateful.
National Autism Association