Autism – Kevin and Avonte’s Law Passed by House, Stalls in Senate

After being amended and passed by the House of Representatives on December 8, Kevin and Avonte’s Law (H.R. 4919), stalled in the Senate. This bill would provide grant funds to state and local law enforcement agencies and nonprofit organizations for education, training, and technology to help prevent and reduce the harm from wandering (or “elopement”). The Arc dropped its support and now opposes the bill after two last minute changes were made: 1) A “pay for” from the Department of Justice’s Byrne Criminal Justice Innovation Program was added to cover the estimated $7 million cost over a five year period, and 2) language was added on the allowable uses of tracking device data that raises civil rights concerns. The measure would need to be reintroduced in the 115th Congress that begins in January.

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