Autism – Bipartisan Bill Introduced to Address Wandering By Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and Other Developmental Disabilities

Kevin and Avonte’s Law (S. 2614) was introduced by Senators Chuck Grassley (R-IA), Chuck Schumer (D-NY), and Thom Tillis (R-NC) on March 1. This legislation reauthorizes an existing program designed to assist in locating persons with dementia who wander from safe environments and it adds new support for children with developmental disabilities, including ASD. It allows Justice Department grants to be used to develop training and emergency protocols, supply first responders with additional information and resources, and make local tracking technology programs available for individuals who may wander because of their condition. The Arc supports this legislation as it seeks to prevent and reduce the harm from wandering (or “elopement”) by the 27% of children with developmental disabilities who are reported to wander from safe settings each year. Read Senator Grassley’s statement for the Congressional Record here.

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