Services to those with autism is the focus of the Maryland Commission on Autism, a group where I'm proud to be a member. The workgroup on which I serve is concerned with services to adults with autism, and I just returned from a meeting on Monday morning. I represent the General Assembly on this panel; other members include parents, professionals and service providers and a self advocate. The Commission is chaired by Renata Henry, Deputy Secretary of the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DHMH).
We're tackling issues of employment, housing, transportation, continuing lifetime skills and health, including mental health, for adults on the autism spectrum.
The number of individuals diagnosed with being on the autism spectrum is growing rapidly. The Commission is committed to identifying services currently available to them. Its goal is to ensure that similar services for children, adults and their families are available through the state.
I have a longtime, strong personal interest in these issues, as I am the parent of a son with autism. If you are also interested in these concerns or if you have suggestions for model programs or ideas that could effectively help adults with autism and their families, please let me know. As always, I'm eager to hear your views!