Developmental disability news

Researchers, therapists and autistic adults push back on ABA, the continued push to get DSPs a living wage, Love on the Spectrum raises concerns and more developmental disability news to know for the week ending March 9, 2024.


The 74 recently published a fascinating deep dive on Applied Behavior Analysis, titled America’s Most Popular Autism Therapy May Not Work — and May Seriously Harm Patients’ Mental Health. Its premise: Researchers, therapists and autistic adults who themselves were ABA patients as children are pushing back on the highly controversial practice.

It writes that, “the U.S. Department of Defense, among other research organizations, has [also] called into question whether ABA actually works. And scholars are investigating whether it causes harm to the children subjected to it. Some who experienced the intervention say it absolutely does.”

Plus, it also posted No More Cures, No More Fixes: How Autistic Leaders are Changing the Therapy Debate, which looks at how the “medical model” of meeting the needs of people with disabilities is moving to a “social model,” the goal of which is to make the environment more inclusive and hospitable to everyone.

New York

Commentary: Inadequate funding for caregivers is hurting New Yorkers with disabilities Low pay for DSPs has led to high turnover and leaves jobs unfilled. (Times Union)

Should a NY library ban a man with autism from children’s room? This petition says no  (

How the NYS budget could impact the Special Olympics The Disabilities Beat podcast interviews Special Olympics New York CEO Stacey Hengsterman. (

Yonkers schools, facing $86 million deficit, urge community to aggressively lobby Albany Reportedly 19% of students have disabilities, and 846 students with specific needs be will educated out of district next year; 310 students in district schools will need one-on-one aides. (

Outside of New York

Dept. of Justice Finds Florida School District Discriminated Against Students with Disabilities It routinely relied on suspensions and referrals to law enforcement. (

NC School District Admits It Restrained Or Secluded Students 864 Times In 6 Months (Disability Scoop)

Alabama’s care net for elderly, disabled people is ‘crumbling,’ suit alleges “The State creates such extreme barriers to access that obtaining the services to which recipients are entitled is nearly — or, in many cases, actually — impossible.” (

VCU-led initiative to expand disability awareness for teachers, curricula in early childhood ed Workforce Ready is a five-year, federally funded program that partners with four Virginia community colleges. (


New Data Finds High Absenteeism Among Kids In Special Ed  Minnesota data points to bigger problem. (Disability Scoop)


It May Get Even Harder To Access Community-Based Services For Those With IDD An annual report out this week, the “Case for Inclusion,”  reinforces what we know all too well: The nation’s system of disability services remains under severe pressure. (Disability Scoop)


An Employer’s Guide to Supporting Workers with Autism (Harvard Business Review)


Disabled Actors Deserve To Blend Into The Background, Too (

‘Love on the Spectrum’ reveals the challenges of autism representation (

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