Autism accessibility bill signed into law in NC

Governor Cooper signs autism accessibility bill
Governor Cooper signs autism accessibility bill(WITN)
Updated: May. 18, 2021 at 9:36 AM EDT
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RALEIGH, N.C. (WITN) - Governor Roy Cooper signed a bill into law Monday that will help make therapy more accessible for families who have children with autism.

Senate Bill 103 unanimously passed both chambers of the General Assembly before heading to the governor’s desk.

It removes the requirement that behavior analysts working in the state be supervised by licensed psychologists.

Bill supporters say removing the restriction will make the state more attractive to behavior analysts.

Currently, there are only 62 psychologists to oversee the work of roughly 680 people who provide care for the state’s 65,000 children with autism.

Bobbie and Kyle Robinson, who founded ‘Aces for Autism’ in Greenville, know how critical this therapy can be.

Their son, Samuel, was diagnosed with moderate to severe autism when he was 18 months old. He needed behavior therapy, but there were no options close to home.

“During the week I was in Winston-Salem,” explained Bobbie Robinson. She had to quit her teaching job and drive almost three hours to make sure Samuel could get therapy.

After over two years of going back and forth, the Robinson’s founded ‘Aces for Autism’ to provide therapy to Eastern Carolinian families and to Samuel.

“From day one of the center to where he is now, it’s a completely different life for him...for our family,” said Bobbie. “He’s able to communicate with us. He’s able to tell us he loves us. I waited four years for him to say ‘I love you.”

The Robinson’s traveled to Raleigh back in February to speak with lawmakers about the importance of this bill and were there again Monday when it became law.

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