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Part 3--Regressive Autism---a New Hypothesis to End an Enigma?

Read Part 1 and Part 2 of this series.                                                          

By Bill Welsh

“First of all they ignore you,
 then they ridicule you
 then they fight you
and then you win"


It is important to remind readers that this series of articles is based on a ‘hypothesis’---a theory. It was made clear in the first episode that this is not a criticism of any earlier hypotheses. So please read the 3 episodes in as neutral a manner as you can, then discuss.

I will summarise the two previous articles and respond to some of the interesting points raised.

It is proposed that the role of auditory processing disruption should be given closer consideration as a material factor in the development of autistic symptoms. It is also proposed that a vaccine contaminant, namely Mycoplasma fermentans, an undesirable by- product of the cell-line technology used in some vaccine manufacturing processes, may be directly responsible for many of the symptoms commonly seen in regressive autistic children. This would include not only auditory processing problems but also chronic gastritis.  (It has been claimed elsewhere that 6% of commercial vaccines are contaminated). Mycoplasma’s opportunistic nature and affinity to the cilia, the hair like structures that extend from nearly all mammalian cells including the cilia containing areas of the inner ear, G.I tract, the eyes’ photoreceptors, and central nervous system would explain a great deal of what is articulated by parents when describing their child’s regression.

 Mycoplasma fermentans is a bacterial pathogen and if it were proved to be in the cells of regressive autistic children the source of the contamination would be difficult to disprove, in my (naive?) view.

In response:

To answer ‘Not an MD’: I mentioned herbal treatments and I can recommend the book “Healing Lyme Disease Co-infections” by Stephen Harrod Buhner. It contains comprehensive (but somewhat harrowing) information on mycoplasmas and includes a rather complex herbal treatment protocol. I have discussed my theory with the author and he says “This makes a lot of sense to me”.

Continue reading "Part 3--Regressive Autism---a New Hypothesis to End an Enigma? " »

NY Authorities Find Remains: #FindAvonte

Avonte FindHuman remains are undergoing DNA analysis to see if they might solve the heartbreaking mystery of 14 year old Avonte Oquendo's disappearance after being allowed to elope from school last October 4th.  We wil bring you updates as available.

From CBS New York.

By Crimesider Staff

COLLEGE POINT, N.Y. - The attorney for the family of Avonte Oquendo gave a news conference Friday addressing reports of human remains found along the shoreline in Queens, N.Y. possibly belonging to the autistic boy who has been missing since Oct. 4, reports CBS New York.


Police boats, helicopters, detectives and water units are searching for additional evidence Friday after the remains were discovered around 7:15 p.m. Thursday.

David Perecman, attorney for Avonte's family, said he spoke to the boy's mother, Vanessa Fontaine, about the new developments 2 a.m. Friday.

Officers responding to a 911 call found a possible arm and legs on the rocks in College Point, police said.

Police also found a torso, some clothing and a dark-colored sneaker in the water, sources told CBS New York.

"It's a size five-and-a-half Nike Jordan sneakers and a size 16 jeans, which are both what Avonte was wearing on the day he left, which are troubling things to hear," Perecman told reporters Friday at the scene in College Point.... Read the full article HERE.

Teri Arranga Has a Conversation of Hope with Dr. Brian Hooker

Conversation of hope

Prof. Brian Hooker, PhD, joins Teri in the debut of this new season of AutismOne: A Conversation of Hope. Dr. Hooker will be talking about documents that have been recently obtained via the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) regarding the CDC cover-up of the relationship between autism and vaccines. In addition, he will discuss his research in the CDC's Vaccine Safety Datalink (VSD) database, where strong, statistically significant relationships have been found between vaccines and autism. Tune in for this vital information.

Autism One: A Conversation of Hope LISTEN HERE.

Tuesdays at 9 AM Pacific Time on VoiceAmerica Health and Wellness Channel

Approximately 1 child in 50 is diagnosed with autism, which gives autism the undesired ranking as the most prevalent childhood developmental disorder in the United States. 67 children will be diagnosed today - that is nearly 1 child every 20 minutes. Autism is treatable and children are significantly improving or recovering following appropriate therapies. “Autism One: A Conversation of Hope” hosted by Teri Arranga, includes discussions with the most experienced doctors, researchers, and therapists in the field, parents of recovered children, and advocates for the children and families. Learn more at the AutismOne site.

Part 2 Regressive Autism - New Hypothesis to End an Enigma?

FrustratedRead Bill's post from last week HERE.

By Bill Welsh                                                

If you are the parent of a regressive autistic child in the UK and have been following the controversy re vaccination’s role in what has occurred you may have to take a deep breath and adopt a seated position before reading this article.

Something is not quite right!

From the very beginning something has not been quite right!

Those of us who witnessed a precious child gradually withdraw following MMR vaccination ‘know’ that MMR is deeply implicated. We do not need an epidemiologist in Finland to tell us we are wrong. We know!

But something is not quite right!

I concede we were up against incredibly powerful forces when we challenged the safety of the vaccination programme but, notwithstanding, we should have won our case by now. Instead we are no further forward. Where did we go wrong?

My appraisal will no doubt be regarded as controversial and perhaps disloyal but for what it is worth here is my opinion of where we went wrong:

From the very beginning parents in the UK were in the hands of ‘experts’, legal and scientific. Decisions were taken before many of us had grasped what had actually happened and as a result a runaway train went hurtling down the track, careering hither and thither, across continents, into court rooms, and along the way galvanizing parents to form action groups. But a decision, central to the entire dispute had already been taken and it was that decision on which our grounds for compensation may have foundered.

I recall reading a statement by Brian Deer (I told you to take a deep breath) where he said something along the lines of ‘If I wanted to prove that MMR caused autism I wouldn’t have gone through the gut’. Interesting, because in my Edinburgh clinic we saw about 500 regressive autistic children and about 20% did not appear to have bowel issues! And some had received single vaccines rather than the MMR!

Why then did we go “through the gut”? Quite simply it was the only show in town at the time. There was only one doctor, highly qualified and compassionate, who supported the parent’s view that MMR was implicated in what had happened and not only that but he could articulate a mechanism, his hypothesis, as to what had happened.

I believe he was correct about the measles virus in the gut, but perhaps not for all the children, only for a sub-set of the sub-set. Was he only partly correct?

Andy Wakefield once said ‘my hypothesis is only one hypothesis’ which is true but at the very beginning there were we assumed no other options. The lawyers went with this suggested explanation and that was before our imaginary train had even left the station.

Continue reading "Part 2 Regressive Autism - New Hypothesis to End an Enigma? " »

Coy Barefoot Interviews Mark Blaxill on Industry Capture, Autism's Rise

Coy logo
Mark Blaxill, co-founder of the Age of Autism news site and co-author with Dan Olmsted of the book by the same name.

TOPIC:  Mark discusses the latest we know about the autism epidemic and reviews the year 2013 in autism.

ORIGINAL BROADCAST DATE:  Wednesday, January 8, 2014.

Click here to listen.

Babies Respond To Tom Insel and IACC's Decision To Abandon Them

Tom InselIf you listened to or participated in yesterday's IACC full committee conference, please share your POV/analysis in the comments here at AofA.   IACC voted AGAINST including the words immunizations or vaccines in the strategic plan despite the link to immune response in ASD. Many of us have already had our children. Elvis has left the building. And wella, wella, wella now we have a lifetime to try to help our vaccine injured kids. But our kids have siblings, younger parents are still having babies and there are generations to come - babies who have been damned by Dr. Tom Insel.

Thank you to those who participated and did their best on behalf of our kids.  Katie Wright has summarized previous IACC meetings for us.  Her write up from the November 2013 meeting is below.  We'll have further review of yesterday's meetings soon.

By Katie Wright

Thank you to Lisa Ackerman for her recent post on the last IACC meeting, she inspired me to get my act together and finish this.

I have fallen behind because my son Christian has started developing grand mal seizures and must now be watched every minute of the day. I also have to stay on top of his twice-monthly IVIG sessions. We are waging a battle royale for insurance coverage, but it is infinitely worth it because Christian’s autism is thoroughly and completely immune mediated. That is why I found this meeting particularly infuriating, but more on that later.

OK, so our story begins at the NIH, in a jam-packed committee room filled with about 30 people, maybe 1 or 2 actual parents of someone with autism. There are 3 IACC members with very, very, very HF aspergers. The rest of the special committee are comprised of geneticists, brain imagers, psychologists and a few odds and ends.  So there you go: the autism research Stone Age. Am I giving away the whole story already?

The group was to first discuss question #1 of the Strategic Report, “When Should I be Concerned?” Frankly, I have no idea why they even need to ask this question in 2014! We really, really, really know the signs of autism now. There are over 11,000 studies on the signs of autism and probably just as many on the importance of early intervention.

Continue reading "Babies Respond To Tom Insel and IACC's Decision To Abandon Them" »

Vaccine Injury: Tip of the Iceberg

IcebergBy Wayne Rohde

The Tip of the Iceberg.  A small evident part or aspect of something largely hidden.

How often have you heard the phrase, it is just the tip of the iceberg? How relevant is it today regarding the discussion of vaccines, vaccine injury, autism, and disease?

Over a century ago, Captain Edward Smith was at the control of the mightiest transcontinental passenger ship liner, the Titanic.  As he and his crew confidently sailed the North Atlantic from England to the United States, little did he know that he was about to succumb to the worst ocean disaster man has ever known.  We all have heard the stories, watched the movies and documentaries about that fateful journey.

But have we been paying attention to the iceberg that we, in current times, have encountered?

Our government, the pharmaceutical industry, and the modern medical establishment have us believe that what we see as vaccine injury is very rare.  Just a blip on the horizon, a very small speed bump.

Do you know how many vaccine injured persons filed petitions in the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (NVICP)?  Only 501 petitions for the fiscal year 2013 ending September 30, 2013.  How many have been filed for this current fiscal year?  89.  And if you project that figure out as to estimate the entire fiscal year 2014, the number will be approximately 534.  In 2012, the number of petitions filed was 400, in 2011 it was 386.  We see a trend increasing each year.  The largest number of petitions filed in the history of the NVICP was 2,592 for the year 2003. 

But we really do not know how many petitions “could be” filed if the NVICP was promoted by the Secretary of the Health and Human Services (HHS) as mandated by law.  The Tip of the Iceberg can be defined as the part that is evident of something largely hidden.  So what is the hidden number of injuries that could be filed as petitions?

There have been discussions to create public awareness campaigns, only to be squelched by HHS officials.  In 2010, a public awareness campaign was shelved.  Banyan Communications received a $ 300,000.00 contract to develop a public awareness campaign.  Discussions held in meetings of the Advisory Commission on Childhood Vaccines (ACCV) centered on determining who will be the primary targets of the campaigns.  Should the focus should be on the general public or a specific group such as pediatric doctors? 

And the details of the Banyan contract which determined goals and actions plans for the Secretary of HHS Kathleen Sebelius to implement were never put in place.  My FOIA’s (Freedom of Information Act) to examine the Banyan contract, to determine which budget paid for the contract, why was the proposed awareness campaign stopped, and who said no, have gone unanswered?

So the question of how many petitions could be filed is very difficult to determine.  Several factors artificially keep the level of petitions to a minimum are a lack of public awareness, difficulty in finding an attorney and medical experts, medical practitioners that deny vaccine injury can happen, the aggressive screening of potential clients by attorneys, and parents who are too emotionally drained just trying to find and maintain medical care services for their children. 

It has been argued that the number of vaccine injuries report to VAERS each year only represents a small percentage of the total number of vaccine injuries that are incurred by children and adults.  Some figures have been placed forward stating that 1%, 5% or even 10% of vaccine injuries actually get reported to VAERS.

Continue reading "Vaccine Injury: Tip of the Iceberg" »

Regressive Autism---A New Hypothesis to End an Enigma?

Question markBy Bill Welsh.

It is difficult to imagine a worse scenario than the one experienced by the many parents I have met.

To witness a perfect child gradually lose all his or her skills, regress, and develop distressing behavioural difficulties, often including self injury, should never be visited on any family, but the sad reality is it has been occurring increasingly for over twenty or more years. And as if observing the deterioration of the child is not enough- even worse eventually follows, sometimes years later,—an official diagnosis of autism (ASD)! Parents soon discover that ‘lifelong’, ‘incurable’ and ‘genetic’ are the three words most associated with the condition. ‘Regressive autism’ is a diagnosis wrapped in bleak negativity.

The latest figures for the UK inform us that over 100,000 schoolchildren have an autism diagnosis. Medical officialdom is quick to re-assure society that there are valid reasons for this significant increase in ASD, including for example ‘better recognition’ and ‘widening diagnostic criteria’.

They are mistaken.

Over 70 years ago autism was identified as a new condition, and was regarded as ‘rare’, that is until about 1990 when its diagnosis began to increase markedly. It is now common. No one in medical science has offered a plausible (one that has survived close scrutiny) explanation for the mystery known as the ‘autism enigma’. This is surprising as there are plenty of clues:

Most, but not all, parents have no hesitation in identifying a vaccination event as the forerunner to their child’s gradual withdrawal. With over 1,500 parents taking legal action, in the usually non-litigious UK, during the MMR vaccine episode one would have thought the role of vaccination would have received very close scientific examination. Inexplicably this did not happen. Official focus remained on the need to maintain public confidence in MMR in order to prevent communicable diseases rather than on a thorough examination of parental testimony. Vaccination as a precursor to a child’s descent into regressive autism became a neglected vital clue.

Another disregarded clue was the consistent reporting by parents of auditory processing disorders in their child. Much of what is seen and described as autistic symptoms (sound sensitivity, communication problems, language development etc) have a clear auditory component while it is highly likely that other symptoms (behavioural difficulties, social functioning etc) might have too. Auditory processing disorders are common in these children. Is this another neglected clue?

 A scientific team in the USA carried out a large and important study of twins and concluded that 65% of autism is caused by an environmental factor, leaving only 35% of autism as genetic in origin. This game-changing news, contradicting a long held belief structure, was seemingly ignored!

A, later retracted, gastro-intestinal study of 12 autistic children in the UK apparently identified “a novel form of bowel disease”. The retraction of the study did not dispel the fact that many autistic children experience bowel problems.

In a landmark decision in the USA a child (Hannah Poling) was granted compensation for having developed ASD following multiple vaccinations including MMR.  The court’s decision was complicated by the discovery that Hannah had a mitochondrial disorder which we were told may have contributed to her withdrawal into autism. (It has since been established that many autistic children have mitochondrial disorder). Was this another overlooked lead?

Continue reading "Regressive Autism---A New Hypothesis to End an Enigma? " »

Autism and The Echo of Minamata's Mercury Tragedy

By Lou Conte

It began with dead fish floating on the surface of Minamata Bay in the 1950’s and ended with over two thousand certified human victims and a devastated city. In 1973, Judge Jirp Saito directed the Chisso Corporation to compensate victims of Minamata Disease, a form of mercury poisoning. Chisso’s factory had poisoned the bay and the people of Minamata. The death-bed confession of Dr. Hajime Hasokowa, a doctor, researcher and Chisso employee who uncovered the company’s role in the poisoning, was critical to the court’s decision. 

Many have heard about the infamous Minamata mercury poisoning incident but few have really considered the ordeal of the victims. Minamata’s tragedy is not just about mercury poisoning. It is about what can happen to and between people when the truth is not told.

We can learn from their tragedy. I believe that they would want us to.

Minamata was an agricultural and fishing village on the western shore of Kyusho, in southern Japan. In 1907, the Chisso Corporation opened a factory that produced plastics and other industrial products. Minamata prospered and became a thriving “one company” city. Chisso brought economic growth and improved the standard of living of the residents.

Mercury, a by-product of the manufacturing process, was dumped into the bay where it ultimately entered the food chain. Sea food from the bay was the primary source of protein for the city’s residents who celebrated their love of the sea in a yearly harbor festival.

The first signs of mercury poisoning were cats “dancing” – suffering mercury induced spasms actually - in the streets. Some of the cats appeared to commit suicide by throwing themselves into the bay.

Then people began to get sick. Some would suddenly shout uncontrollably and suffer slurred speech. Skills such as writing, holding chop sticks or buttoning shirts were lost. Victims trembled and had trouble walking. Some would tear at their clothes, writhing in agony. The residents had no idea what was happening and called it the “strange disease.” Many suffered a type of paralysis that contorted their limbs. Some died quickly, within weeks. Some lingered for years. Their suffering was appalling.

Then it got even worse. Children were born with horrible birth defects.

Continue reading "Autism and The Echo of Minamata's Mercury Tragedy" »

Media Bullies Can Suck It

Troll sparyBy Zack Gonzales

The rumor mill goes round and round - autism is just being diagnosed more; recovery isn't real; nothing but quack treatments; Jenny McCarthy's son never had autism. It's exhausting. Autism is an epidemic. Recovery IS real. There's nothing quack about the treatments for it, other than the people spreading the rumor. And Jenny McCarthy's son WAS diagnosed with autism. She herself has even come out and shot down the rumor with an official statement through Generation Rescue.

I don't understand why there has to be constant negative media about the REAL HOPE that dedicated activists and organizations are trying to provide for people with autism? It's simply ignorance. If you want to be miserable in your life, go be miserable, but don't take hope away from a family in need. Sometimes, hope is all we got! 

As a sibling of a boy with autism, I know what it's like to have hope and I know what it's like to not have hope. And guess what? I'm choosing to go with the hope. And despite what anybody says, autism is treatable. I have seen my brother on biomed improve. And I have seen my brother regress when it was taken away. 

I, myself, have received a lot of shit from trolls online about my brother and about myself. I don't care. I stand by what I say and I support the people that continue to get the message across. I will also do everything in my power to make sure my brother gets to live the best life he possibly can. And no greasy, mid-aged man with a keyboard that has nothing better to do than trash a message of hope is going to stop me. 

Don't get caught up in the senseless nonsense that floats around the internet. Educate yourself and make informed decisions. Does that mean listen to me and everything I say? No. It means READ and pay attention to what you're reading. Get the facts, not the troll Facebook comments. And from there, listen to your gut. And don't lose hope. Without it, what do you have? 

Tweet me @JustPlainZack - let's keep each other motivated. Let's keep the media bullies down. 


HealthImpactNews on Nurses Saying No to Flu Vaccines

Mandatory-flu-shot-259x300From HealthImpactNews:

As 2014 begins to unfold, it is becoming clear that the medical care industry is facing a crisis.

We have already reported about how many doctors are refusing to participate in the new Obamacare health insurance exchanges (See: Seven out of every 10 Physicians in California are Rebelling against Obamacare). But another unintended consequence of new medical care legislation is the refusal of nurses to comply with new mandatory flu vaccination requirements. With a nation-wide shortage in nurses already problematic long before Obamacare was implemented, things are only going to get worse.

Experienced nurses across the United States are choosing to lose their jobs rather than submit to forced mandatory flu vaccinations. This began last flu season, in 2012, and we reported many stories of brave nurses standing up for their rights and refusing to submit to mandatory flu vaccinations as a requirement to keeping their jobs. (See: Brave Nurses Lose Jobs to Stand on Principle and Refuse Forced Vaccinations)

Unfortunately, many of our nation’s best nurses were already lost at the beginning of the 2012-2013 flu season as new mandates in Obamacare kicked in, requiring medical care facilities to have a 90% compliance to the flu vaccine as a requirement to receive full reimbursements for Medicare and Medicaid. (See: Are Mandatory Flu Vaccines for Healthcare Workers part of Obamacare and Linked to Financial Reimbursement to Healthcare Facilities?)

The trend towards losing nurses over the mandatory flu vaccine has continued this flu season, in 2013-2014.


American Military Families Autism Support Salutes Sarah Stockwell As Person of the Year

Military ribbonsPlease join us in wishing Age of Autism contributor Sarah Stockwell (Military Kids with Autism Face Special Challenges and Tricare Going AWOL on Military Autism Families?) congratulations on being named the AMFAS Person of the Year for 2013.  From the AMFAS site:


American Military Families Autism Support is a grassroots effort started in 2008 by military families, for military families, providing news, information, contacts and options for military families dealing with autism spectrum disorder. Due to the nature of military life and the challenges of autism, these families often experience additional stressors over non-military families.

As many of you may have encountered during your autism journey, your attempts to find information and support is often difficult. This site is about one thing: your family.

The Navy, Army, Air Force, Marines, and Coast Guard have many things in common, but also many things that differ including care and services for special needs families. AMFAS was created because of the challenges families had making sense of what really applies to them.

AMFAS is not a corporation, a fund-raising machine or a site created using money or outsourcing to interns. We are miltiary families who have experienced the intricacies of care, both on and off installations. We do not look to raise money, just support for military families. AMFAS serves as a starting point for a military family with a newly diagnosed child.


Continue reading "American Military Families Autism Support Salutes Sarah Stockwell As Person of the Year" »

Gates Foundation Takes Heat from Catholic Newspaper

GATES HEADWe have written several posts about the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and their work to promote global vaccination and to track those of us who promote vaccine safety.  A "friend of ours" sent us this article from The National Catholic Register about pushback the Foundation is receiving RE injectible birth control. The parallels to promoting vaccination are interesting.  (Our intention is not to start a conversation or comment thread about birth control per se- that's personal choice for our readers including this writer.)

Dan Olmsted: The Universe Dents Bill Gates

BBC Admits Dark Side to Bill Gates’s Polio Project Ahead of Dimbelby Lecture

UConn's Seth Kalichman Funded By Gates Foundation To Surveil So Called Anti-Vaccine Citizens

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Anti-Vaccine Surveillance Alert

Bill Gates on CNN: They Kill Children (Vaccine Safety Advocates)

Vaccine Safety Advocates Demand an Apology from Bill Gates

Doing "God's Work": is Bill Gates's Second Career Ethically Messier than his First?

Group Accuses Gates Foundation, USAID of Hiding Injectable Contraceptive Dangers (4852)

WASHINGTON — Hundreds of thousands of impoverished women and girls in both the U.S. and Africa are not being told about dangerous side effects associated with a contraceptive injection that is heavily promoted by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF), USAID, Planned Parenthood and a collection of “racist” family-planning groups, a human-rights report alleges.

The scathing report from the Washington-based Rebecca Project for Human Rights, a group that advocates for vulnerable women and girls in the U.S. and Africa, accuses the Gates Foundation of colluding with family-planning organizations to deliberately conceal known risks of the injectable hormonal contraceptive, Depo-Provera, manufactured by the Pfizer pharmaceutical company, to promote a “population-control ideology.”

Continue reading "Gates Foundation Takes Heat from Catholic Newspaper" »

$19MM Iowa State Grant Scam for AIDS Vaccine

ScammedHad to check this story to see if it was from The Onion.  We're often told that vaccines are a public health miracle, are not about profits or making money, but saving babies (salute flag, take a bite of apple pie) and have revolutionized the world. (Yeah, ask any autism classroom teacher.) From Fox News -  as of this writing, CNN, ABC, NBC ("just get the damn shot), CBS and MSNBC have not shared the story.

An Iowa State University professor resigned after admitting he falsely claimed rabbit blood could be turned into a vaccine for the AIDS virus.

Dr. Dong-Pyou Han spiked a clinical test sample with healthy human blood to make it appear that the rabbit serum produced disease-fighting antibodies, officials said.

The bogus findings helped Han’s team obtain $19 million in research grants from the National Institutes of Health, said James Bradac, who oversees the institutes’ AIDS research.

The remarkable findings were reported in scientific journals but raised suspicions when other researchers could not duplicate Han’s results.

The NIH uncovered the scam when it checked the rabbit serum at a lab and found the human antibodies.

Han resigned from his university post as an assistant professor of biomedical studies  in October. His case came to light this week when it was reported in the Federal Register.

Merry Christmas from Age of Autism

We'd like to wish our Christian readers Merry Christmas. And may  all AofAers enjoy the love and peace of the season. Thank you for your support throughout the year. 

Remember Avonte Oquendo This Christmas Day

Avonte Oquendo has been missing in New York City since October 4th when he was allowed to bolt out of his school.  Please take a moment to remember him, pray for him if so inclined, and for his family too. Christmas is about finding a safe place for your baby, is it not?  Let's hope for tidings of great joy for the Oquendo family - and soon.  Merry Christmas.  Kim

Avonte Still Missing

USA Today Gives Couric A Lump Of Coal

Lump-Of-Coal-CachetteManaging Editor's Note: Katie Couric has delved into healthcare and safety issues in the past, most notably her campaign to encourage colonoscopies after her husband's death from colon cancer. Before her show was cancelled a few days ago, she aired a program with parents whose children had been injured by the Merck HPV (genital wart virus) vaccine called Gardasil. The pharma crackdown was swift and harsh. Families across the country are awakening to the draconian and patently un-American tactics used to sell and even force vaccination.  Of course, the vaccine injury denialists are misogynists to the core - attacking Ms. Couric, mothers (like many of us) and Jenny McCarthy.

Is Katie Couric taking Jenny McCarthy's place as the latest celebrity vaccine denier? If her show this week on the vaccine that prevents most types of cervical cancer is any indicator, the answer is "yes."

As someone who went through her own cervical cancer scare years ago, and as the mother of a 13-year-old girl who will be starting the vaccine series for the human papillomavirus, this is not what I expected from a journalist whose famed colonoscopy, televised in 2000, did much to publicize the best way to fight colon cancer. So why would a respected journalist create a faux controversy that could put young girls across the country at risk?

Couric is following in dangerous footsteps. The View co-host McCarthy has long promoted the idea that the MMR vaccine (measles, mumps and rubella) her son received as an infant caused him to be autistic. She wrote books and appeared on TV urging parents not to vaccinate their children because she was convinced there was a link between the vaccines and autism, even though the science couldn't be clearer that she's wrong. McCarthy created a nationwide parental push-back on vaccinations that some doctors believe contributed to an increase in diseases such as whooping cough and measles.

Now it seems Couric is on that destructive bandwagon. And she is a much more powerful and trusted voice than McCarthy who, before her vaccine crusade, was known more for appearing in Playboy than for anything of substance.  Read the entire letter at USpharmAToday

"Not Paid To Post?" Dorit Rubinstein Reiss, UC Hastings College of Law and Kaiser Permanente

ReissBy Christina Waldman

In the past weeks, Prof Dorit Reiss of Hastings law school in San Francisco has been bombarding the blogs with many hundreds of comments in relation Katie Couric’s broadcast on HPV vaccine - likely in excess of a thousand.

( Rosie Perez

Katie What Are Your Thoughts on Gardasil Conversation Continued

HuffPo: Furthering Conversation)

So many, in fact, that it is hard to imagine how it could not interfere with her normal professional routine. Whether or not Reiss has been able to perform her normal professional tasks during this period there is an issue of whether her advocacy may be conflicted by the sponsorship and institutional affiliations of her employer, examined here by Christina Waldman.

In an exchange a few days ago (Dec 8) between University of California (UC) Hastings Associate Law Professor Dorit Reiss and "Vince Brown" on,  Brown accuses Reiss of being “paid to post” in favor of vaccines.  Reiss  replies:  "Not really.  My lawschool [sic] would pay me the same salary whether or not I post here."  Brown persisted, and Reiss confirmed, “I am sorry you had trouble understanding my comment. No, no one is paying me to post here.”

Be that as it may, the institutional activities of Hastings have latterly become bound up in partnerships between UCSF/UC Hastings and Kaiser Permanente, the largest managed health care organization in the US , the head office of which is just across San Francisco bay in Oakland.

According to Wiki:

“UCSF is administered separately from Hastings College of Law, another UC institution located in San Francisco. In recent years, UCSF and UC Hastings have increased their collaboration, including the formation of the UCSF/Hastings Consortium on Law, Science, and Health Policy.”

The Consortium “offers impressive opportunities” for students in education, research, and clinical studies, including internships/externships with Kaiser Permanente and others.   (8/28/13 press release).  (Paper by Consortium members, “Price Transparency in the Health Care Market)

A November 14, 2013 press release announced a new center for the study of uses for the human genome, a joint endeavor of Kaiser Permanente, UC San Francisco and UC Hastings College of Law.  To this end, the National Human Genome Research Institute provided $778,000.

One of the papers most frequently cited by Reiss in her defense of HPV and Gardasil vaccine was conducted by Kaiser Permanente or behalf of Merck:

Author Affiliations: Kaiser Permanente Vaccine Study Center, Oakland (Dr Klein, Messrs Hansen, Emery, and Lewis, and Ms Deosaransingh), Research and Evaluation, Kaiser Permanente Southern California, Pasadena (Drs Chao and Jacobsen, Messrs Slezak and Takhar, and Ms Sy), Department of Pediatrics, South Bay Medical Center, Kaiser Permanente Southern California, Los Angeles (Dr Ackerson), and Pharmacy Analytical Service, Kaiser Permanente Southern California, Downey (Dr Cheetham); and Department of Epidemiology, Merck Sharp and Dohme, Whitehouse Station, New Jersey(Drs Velicer and Liaw)….

Financial Disclosure: This study was funded by Merck & Co. Dr Klein receives research support from Merck & Co, GlaxoSmithKline, Pfizer, Novartis, and sanofipasteur for unrelated studies. Dr Jacobsen and Mr Slezak received research funding from Merck & Co for another study related to HPV4. Mr Slezak served as an unpaid consultant to Merck & Co. Dr Chao received research funding from Merck&Co, Amgen, and Pfizer for unrelated studies. Drs Velicer and Liaw are employees of Merck & Co.

Role of the Sponsor: The study sponsor, Merck & Co, provided substantial input into the study design and analytic plan. In collaboration with the Kaiser Study Team, the sponsor reviewed data analyses and helped draft and revise the manuscript. The Kaiser Study Team investigators made final decisions regarding manuscript edits.

Kaiser Permanente is a self-proclaimed “national leader in vaccine research” through its Vaccine Center Study and Division of Research, including much Gardasil-related research. 

The CDC and Kaiser Permanente work together closely on a multitude of projects. (Morgellons and


Money flows from the CDC Foundation to Kaiser, and also from Kaiser back to the CDC Foundation.   

Continue reading ""Not Paid To Post?" Dorit Rubinstein Reiss, UC Hastings College of Law and Kaiser Permanente" »

Petition: Closing Loopholes as CA Public Health Authorities Claim Power to Forcibly Medicate in Emergency

Your_rightsRead the petition at

Public health authorities claim the power to forcefully medicate or quarantine anyone, even peaceful citizens, so long as they first declare an ‘emergency’:

  • Many states also have laws providing for mandatory vaccinations during a public health emergency or outbreak of a communicable disease. Generally, the power to order such actions rests with the governor of the state or with a state health officer…. [and] if a person refuses to be vaccinated, he or she may be quarantined during the public health emergency giving rise to the vaccination orderOfficial Source: Mandatory Vaccinations: Precedent and Current Laws, Congressional Research Service (February 24, 2011).

  • The local health officer may take any preventive measure that may be necessary to protect and preserve the public health from any public health hazard during any "state of war emergency," "state of emergency," or "local emergency"…” California Health and Safety Code section 101040.

Continue reading "Petition: Closing Loopholes as CA Public Health Authorities Claim Power to Forcibly Medicate in Emergency" »

Board of Health New York City Votes to Mandate Flu Vaccine for Tots

Crying libertyBy Anne Dachel

The Board of Health in New York City has voted to make the flu shot mandatory for kids in preschool and daycare.  
Melody Anne Butler, RN, founder of Nurses Who Vaccinate, and John Gilmore, Autism Action Network, discussed the flu vaccine requirement for young children in NYC. New York News
Butler: "The flu shot has been clinically proven to save lives and the earlier you start, six months and older, you help protect children,  And when you protect children, you're also protecting families. . . . "
In answer to the question of people getting the flu despite having gotten a flu shot, Butler said, "Yes, but they'll also get a less severe version of it.  And the more people who get the flu shot, the less people who actually contract the disease."
Gilmore: "The flu shot isn't nearly as effective as people are led to believe it is.  There are study after study that show it effectiveness is questionable. There are a great deal of side effects associated with it.  There isn't good evidence that it is effective at all in young children."

John was asked about the "tie into autism."
Gilmore: "At this age group, that's not really an issue.  What is an issue is neurological damage. All you have to do is read the package insert for the flu shot and it's right there that it can cause Guillain-Barre Syndrome and a variety of neurological problems.  We just don't think it's called for.  If parents want to give their child this shot, they can do it.  They can go to any drug store and do it.  We don't see any reason why it should be forced upon them by the city of New York.  These will be the only citizens in the state of New York who are required by law to get this shot."
Butler then talked about how effective vaccines are in preventing disease.
Gilmore: "I disagree with that.  Just this week, in the New England Journal of Medicine, a study came out that said the review showed reliable evidence of influenza vaccine is thin, but there is evidence of widespread manipulation of conclusion and spurious notoriety of the studies."

Continue reading "Board of Health New York City Votes to Mandate Flu Vaccine for Tots" »

FREE EBook from Nourishing Hope: Nutrition for Every Child!

Nourishing Hope Offer

Download the FREE EBook at Nourishing Hope now.

By Julie Matthews, Certified Nutrition Consultant

For autism, giving attention to the food and nutrition children receive is fundamental. However, with picky eating issues being so common in autism, the parental drive to nourish sometimes takes a back seat to the day-to-day realities of simply getting a child to eat - anything. 

Don't let this happen to you, food and nutrition choices are vital – and it is especially important to pay attention if your child’s diet has become limited or restricted to certain foods.  This is highlighted by a recent case study of a 9 year old boy with autism1 who ate only chicken nuggets, crackers, cookies and water – a diet not uncommon for a child with autism.  He refused fruits, vegetables, juice, and vitamins.

This boy developed a limp, followed by cough, tachypnea, hypoxia, and tachycardia, and was diagnosed with pulmonary hypertension (PH).  His medical team (at a respected hospital) was completely stumped, having no idea what was causing his condition or how to ameliorate it. On a whim, the mother mentioned that the boy had bleeding gums - what she thought was an unrelated symptom. A doctor recognized that as a sign of nutritional deficiency –and ordered a complete nutritional work up identifying severe nutritional deficiencies including “undetectable” levels of vitamin C, as well as low vitamin B1, B6, B12, and vitamin D. 

The doctor diagnosed the boy with severe nutritional deficiencies, and began vitamin therapy.

Once the vitamin levels were improved and replete, the metabolic bone disease and his heart and lung problems were reversed.  Through the fundamental “intervention” of nutrition, this child’s life was turned around.

I’m surprised to still hear people say, “there is no research to support diet for autism.”  Even this case study, shows us that simply not getting essential nutrients in the diet can be detrimental, even possibly life threatening. 

There are many other reasons to improve nutritional intake and follow a special diet, here is some of the supportive evidence:

  • Studies on gluten and casein creating opioids in autism  2, 3, 4, 5
  • Research on digestive problems with gluten & casein in autism 6
  • Elevated antibiotics to gluten in autism 7
  • Reduced autistic symptoms with gluten-free and casein-free diet, 8, 9, 10
  • Decreases autistic symptoms with nutrient supplementation 11

Continue reading "FREE EBook from Nourishing Hope: Nutrition for Every Child!" »

Free Download Post Couric Vaccine Program: Gardasil A License to Kill?

Jessica's GravestoneWe ran this post in October of 2012. Katie Couric bravely ran a program about Gardasil (HPV vaccine from Merck) and adverse reactions. The outcry from the IVID (Industry Vaccine Injury Denialists) was fast and furious.   We invite you to learn the background of this vaccine, how your tax dollars helped to bring it to market and how your government benefited from its licensing.  And how Dr. Julie Gerberding the Director of the CDC under the approval process is now the President of the Merck Vaccine Divisionl,  in the age old revolving door of corporate/government incest.

Editor's note: With permission from Skyhorse Publishing, we are Jessie_angel[1]pleased to offer you a free download of chapter 19, A License to Kill? by Mark Blaxill and Dan Olmsted. The article is included the just-relased paperback version of "Vaccine Epidemic," edited by Louise Kuo Habakus and Mary Holland.

According to the publishers: "Gardasil is the newest childhood vaccine to be licensed by the FDA and recommended for universal use by the CDC. Judge for yourself whether this 'public-private partnership' prioritizes the best interests of our children. Or is it a perfect example of corporate greed, biased science, and coercive government? Please let us know what you think."  (That's Jessica Ericzon who died following Gardasil vaccination in the photo. And her head stone.)

This article identifies a pattern of conflicts of interest at the Department of Health and Human Services – and ultimately throughout the federal government -- involving Merck’s controversial Gardasil vaccine against HPV, or human papilloma virus.

  • Researchers at the National Cancer Institute invented critical technology for the vaccine.
  • Another National Institutes of Health office filed for patents on the technology, licensed those patent rights to vaccine manufacturers and eventually received royalties from Merck, Gardasil’s manufacturer.
  • The Food and Drug Administration supervised the clinical trials and granted Merck a license application for the first HPV vaccine.
  • Just three weeks later, an advisory committee at the Centers for Disease Control recommended universal HPV vaccination for women from nine to twenty-six years of age, guaranteeing Gardasil would reach blockbuster status for Merck: annual revenues of well over $1 billion.
  • Subsequently, agencies within FDA and CDC have been responsible for monitoring Gardasil’s safety in the field,
  • As officials within the Health Resources Services Administration brace themselves to sit in judgment over a new wave of vaccine injury claims.

Meanwhile, key officials involved in the decisions rotate through a revolving door into private industry. These conflicts are both extraordinary in scope and poorly understood by the general public. But they are central to understanding why unsafe and unnecessary vaccines are approved and recommended – why we have a vaccine epidemic.

Download Gardasil: A License to Kill Here

Boy with Autism Lets Us Into His World Via Writing

Speak outI received this letter - school paper - from a long time reader of AofA, and asked instantly if I could please share it with you our readers.  This young man uses the Rapid Prompting Method to communicate. And just listen to his thoughts.....   Rapid Prompting Method RPM empowers the learner a way to express his learning, understanding, reasoning and thoughts.

8-29-13       Narrative – High School Experience – Journal Exercise 1.8

Sam couldn’t do RPM.  He was not placing the choices in the right place.  I couldn’t touch what I wanted.  He placed the choices too far away from me.  A giant desk was between us.  I had to stretch my arm and it bothered me.  It made me tired.  My arm felt like lead. Sam also couldn’t speak.  He stuttered. 

I couldn’t show I was learning anything from Sam.  I can’t talk all the words I think and I can’t write.  I understand everything read or said to me.  It’s ironic.  I can’t talk and yet I am critical of Sam's stuttering.

All I could think about was how to hurt him.  I came up with a plan, or I had a plan, to hit him whenever I had a chance.  They had a bolster blocking me from attacking.

I sat in a lousy hard chair.  I was mad because no one knew I was smart. Stinky rotten teachers, Sam was a big black inept jerk.  The classroom had cold cinder block walls, yucky zoo classroom.  I felt I might as well be in prison.

Ellie gave a workshop on RPM.  She was wonderful.  I was sad to see her go.  She was patient and skilled.  She made me feel competent and successful.  The other teachers were patronizing.  They laughed at her as she spoke and taught.  I felt humiliated.  I just kept looking down and avoiding eye contact.

Continue reading "Boy with Autism Lets Us Into His World Via Writing" »

Buy One Ad on Age of Autism and We'll Double It Free

Mad_men___keep_calm_and_keep_advertising_by_4dragonsmedia-d5c7wh6Now through December 31st, if you take one ad on the Age of Autism left sidebar, we'll double the ad for free!  

Many of our readers have websites, books and products to promote to the autism community.  We'd like to say "Happy Holidays" by doubling your ad now through December 31.

You can create your own ad using the Blogads turnkey system.  Click Advertise on Age of Autism to see our 1 week, 2 week, 1 month and quarterly ad rates and to get started on your holiday ad.

Contact with any questions.  We also invite inquiries on SPONSORSHIP for 2014.

Unofficial Transcript Katie Couric on Gardasil Vaccine Injury

KatiebigKatie Couric interviewed Rosemary Mathis and Emily Tarsell.  Rosemary is President of - devoted to informed vaccine/medical consent for the safety of all patients.  Our reader Bob Moffit created this unofficial transcript for us to share with you.   Our Anne Dachel shared in her News Review that TIME Magazine was quick to attack Couric for her willingness to air this story:


There is no "HPV Vaccine Controversy." At least, not when it comes to the injection's safety. And yet, that was the title of the lead segment on Katie Couric's daytime talk show, "Katie," this afternoon. The nearly half-hour story, which the program called their "Big Conversation," centered around two mothers who believe the vaccine for human papillomavirus (HPV) harmed their daughters.

Among the guests were Emily Tarsell, a mother who claims the death of her daughter, Christina, was caused by the HPV vaccine Gardasil in 2008. Another mother and daughter pair, Rosemary and Lauren Mathis, believe Lauren developed a bizarre illness characterized by nausea and fatigue due to the vaccine. Rosemary Mathis is now the director of the anti-HPV organization, SaneVax, Inc.

Tarsell and Mathis are understandably distraught mothers. But Couric is a journalist. . . .

The two HPV vaccines currently available, Gardasil and Cervarix, are both proven safe through clinical trials, independent studies, and post licensure monitoring. The CDC and FDA also continue to track the vaccines' safety.

And yet Couric has framed the issue as if there were a debate to be had about whether the HPV vaccines are good for the public's health. . .

Here is the unofficial transcript.

"I had my two daughters vaccinated and so did millions of other parents .. but .. some say the risks may outweigh the benefits. There are claims it could be dangerous in a handful of cases .. even deadly .. but .. nearly 80 million Americans have HPV and there are 14 million new cases reported every year. We want to keep our kids safe .. but .. is the vaccine the way to go? That's what we're asking as today's "Big Question".
VOICE-OVER:  Human Papilloma Virus is a sexually transmitted disease that's almost impossible to avoid.  According to the CDC, nearly all sexually active men and women will contract HPV at some point in their lives.  For most people, having HPV doesn't cause any health problems .. the virus has few outside signs or symptoms .. and .. 90% of HPV infections will go away within 2 years.  But the virus can also lay dormant for years or even decades before mutating into genital warts or causing 1 of 6 types of cancer .. the most common of which is cervical cancer .. a disease that claims the lives of 4,000 women a year in the U.S.  To combat the spread of HPV, the FDA approved two vaccines .. Gardasil and Cerverix.  Only Gardasil has been approved for boys by the CDC .. but .. both vaccines are recommended at the age of 11, with the hope of immunizing children before they become sexually active.  Gardasil is administered in a series of three shots, Cerverix in two.  While the FDA and CDC say the vaccines are safe, the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP) reported there have been over 200 claims against HPV vaccines, including 11 families who believe it caused their child's death.  In June, 2008, twenty-one year old Kristina Tarsel from Spark's, Maryland, was found dead in her bedroom .. only a few weeks after being inoculated with Gardasil.  While the autopsy report listed Kristina's death as "undetermined" .. her mother Emily believes she knows what killed her daughter.
KATIE:  So, please welcome Kristina's mother, Emily Tarsel.  Thank you so much for being here.   First of all, I am so sorry about your daughter's death, just 21 years old.  Tell us a little bit about Kristina, Emily.
EMILY:  She had a great curiosity about life, she was an athlete and an artist .. and .. a philosopher.
KATIE:  Sounds like an outstanding person with obviously an incredibly bright future.  Did you all decide together she would get the HPV vaccine?

Continue reading "Unofficial Transcript Katie Couric on Gardasil Vaccine Injury" »

"Bought" A Film By Jeff Hays and Bobby Sheehan Matching Fund Campaign

Bought MovieA New York based foundation is MATCHING EVERY DOLLAR RAISED, UP TO $150,000! Lets make a movie that blows the lid off Monsanto, Big Pharma and Vaccines!

Indiegogo Fund Raising for BOUGHT HERE.


Bought is a film about the issue of health being sold out from underneath individuals through big pharmaceutical companies, dangerous vaccinations and a food supply chain contaminated by the use of GMO’s. Jeff Hays started Capstone Entertainment in the mid-nineties and built a production/distribution company to a multi-million dollar level and won numerous awards in children’s programming. One of Jeff’s most notable films was Fahrenhype 9/11, which he produced in 2004 featuring Ron Silver, Dick Morris, Senator Zell Miller, Mayor Ed Koch and others. This film generated millions in revenue and was widely accepted by the public and received positive reviews from the NY Times, Variety and other media. In 2005, Jeff produced On Native Soil where he was short-listed for an Academy Award. He also produced My Workout on Lifetime Television for a year and most recently released Doctored which has already sold over 150,000 copies. Bought is currently scheduled to be released Spring 2014. For more information go to or contact Renee Stewart at 866.519.5445 or

Jeff Hays  announced that principal photography has begun on the new documentary film – Bought. A new crowd funding campaign at has an early trailer. Bought is a film dedicated to uncovering, exposing and highlighting the facts all individuals have a right to know. Andrew Wakefield may have been credited for the global awakening of the potential relationship between MMR vaccinations and autism, which has been highly controversial and debated heavily, but Bought is committed to uncovering the facts so each person can make the decision that is right for him or her.

Landmark cases have been won this year in U.S. Vaccine Court, granting families of autistic children financial awards for the damage caused to their children by vaccinations. For the first time ever, several of these families have agreed to be interviewed on camera, and let their stories be heard publicly.

“Andrew Wakefield has a role in this film because there is new evidence that has been uncovered that suggests his findings were correct. The media has tried him and virtually ruined his reputation. I’m here to expose the facts because I believe in life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. However, it appears much of the medical/industrial/governmental machine is about sacrificing a few, for the supposed greater good of others,” said Jeff Hays, producer of Bought. “We intend to ignite a national conversation that involves parents nationwide and stirs the curiosity of millions. I want to ignite that innate portion of our human instinct that is designed to question and ultimately protect each of us from harm. I know this is controversial, and it should be. The days of just accepting what the medical community, the media and the government say should be gone.” 

The American Academy of Pediatrics says that vaccines work, that vaccines are safe, and that vaccines are necessary. Yet:

 Over 5,000 cases alleging a causal relationship between vaccinations and autism have been filed under the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program in the US Court of Federal Claims between 2001 and 2009

The US Court of Federal Claims Office of Special Masters, between 1988 and 2009, has awarded compensation to 1,322 families whose children suffered brain damage from vaccines
Over $2 billion dollars has been awarded to families who have been injured or killed by vaccine reactions by this “Vaccine Court.”

About 30,000 cases of adverse reactions to vaccines have been reported annually to the federal government since 1990, with 13% classified as serious, meaning associated with permanent disability, hospitalization, life-threatening illness or death.

Continue reading ""Bought" A Film By Jeff Hays and Bobby Sheehan Matching Fund Campaign" »

Find Avonte Oquendo: Autism, Wandered from School 10/4 Queens NY

Avonte Still
Please remember that Avonte Oquendo is still missing.


FROM 10/17/13:  We've been following and updating the Avonte Oquendo story on our FB and Twitter feeds. In case you have not heard, Avonte eloped from his school in Queens, New York and has not been seen since  the 4th.. His family is moving heaven and earth to find him. Officials have stopped train work - Avonte loves trains and there is the hope he is alive somewhere in the subway or commuter train system.  

Please send out good thoughts, prayers if you are so inclined, and alert anyone you know in New York City, New Jersey and Connecticut that Avonte may have boarded a train and been transported away from his family. 

Facebook Page Missing Avonte Oquendo

From ABC New York:

LONG ISLAND CITY (WABC) -- The desperate search for Avonte Oquendo continues, as the reward was increased to $70,000 for information leading to his safe return.

Continue reading "Find Avonte Oquendo: Autism, Wandered from School 10/4 Queens NY" »

US of Autism Movie Now Available for Preorder

The United States of Autism is available for pre-order now -  US of Autism DVD Combo Pack.  Below is Dan Olmsted's review of this movie.  Order today!

By Dan Olmsted

I had my guard up this week when I sat down with Cat Jameson and her husband, Steve, to watch The United States of Autism. Let's face it, there are a lot of autism movies, and a lot more in the pipeline. I'm interested in causation, not awareness, and I don't view autism as something we just need to get up close and personal with and all shall be well. And really, how good can something be that sprang to life thanks in part to a $50,000 grant from Pepsi?

My guard started dropping partway through the amazing opening credit sequence. I leaned over to Cat and whispered, "That's $50,000 worth of animation right there."

Well, it could have been, but as I learned later, the director and executive producer, Richard Everts, sat down and taught himself to do it after an a professional wanted a couple of thousand dollars for just the first few seconds. I learned that from Richard's wife, Sugey Cruz-Everts, also an executive producer, who attended the screening in Arlington, Va.

But on to the film itself. The gimmick is some guy taking reluctant leave of his wife and son and running around the country for 40 days, dropping in on lots of families with autism and a few experts, interacting, popping questions, shaking hands, hugging, and heading on down the road. At one level, it's like a bunch of Love It or List It episodes on HGTV jammed together: Host and (unseen) camera crew arrive at the door, family greets them, they go inside and chitchat for a few seconds about their difficult circumstances (two kids in one bedroom, etc., if we're talking HGTV). Once over lightly, but from a darker place.

Continue reading "US of Autism Movie Now Available for Preorder" »

Pay It Backward. Meet a Young Adult with Vaccine Injury AKA Autism.

ThanksManaging Editor's Note:  Thank you to Laura for this beautiful video of her son. We are grateful for all of our readers, supporters, contributors this Thanksgiving.   And we'd like to thank you for  the generous support you have shown during our matching gift campaign. Use the donate button on the right or send an email to for a  mailing address.  (Reminder, there is a matching campaign underway through midnight on Thanksgiving.)  Enjoy a safe, happy holiday.

By Laura Hayes

Hi All,

I had a spur-of-the-moment idea the other day… make a video of Ryan, who was severely injured and permanently disabled by his "routine" childhood vaccinations, to give you a visual as to what vaccine injury looks like in a "young man", who is in actuality a young child now encased in a man's body.  He is but one of many similar young men in his age group, young men (and young women) who have suffered catastrophic brain, nervous-system, immune-system, and GI-system damage from that which their parents innocently and unknowingly allowed to be done to them by their child's "doctor" without being given even an iota of informed consent. 

I, like so many other parents of vaccine-injured children, spend my days sharing our story, and encouraging other parents, and people of all ages, as strongly as I possibly can, to educate before you vaccinate.  Once you allow a vaccine to enter your body, or your chid's, or in today's world, your fetus', you can't get it back out.  Rather, you have just allowed and unleashed a cataclysmic chain of events to begin unfolding, whose results will now begin to reveal themselves over the course of a lifetime, and whose results will be exacerbated by additional insults in the forms of more vaccines, GMO-laden foods, widespread pesticide use, widespread use of toxic cleaners, tainted water, etc. (Remember, it took decades for it to be revealed that the millions of SV-tainted polio vaccines of the late 1950s have led to many of today's soft-tissue cancers in middle-aged adults, for but one example.)  I, along with so many others, am beyond passionate about urging others to do their own research about the dangers and inefficacies of vaccines, and about the fallacy of the theory behind vaccination in the first place…we are borderline fanatical.  Why?  Because we live with the results of vaccine injury day in and day out.  We know firsthand the devastation it leaves in its wake.  We know that no one will be held liable or accountable (not the vaccine-maker and not the one who administered the vaccine), that the parent will be solely responsible for the vaccine-injured child from that day forward.  We know the battles that lie ahead for any parent of a vaccine-injured child…with school districts, with doctors, with state agencies, with insurance companies, with the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program, with community members who are unsympathetic, the list goes on.  We want to spare other children from what was done to our children, and from what our children, and our families, endure on a daily basis…with no end in sight.

Continue reading "Pay It Backward. Meet a Young Adult with Vaccine Injury AKA Autism." »

Donation Drive for Age of Autism Continues

Thank you typeEXCITING OPPORTUNITY this Thanksgiving to show your thanks and appreciation for how the "Age of Autism" blog has helped, educated, and encouraged you and countless others! 
DONATE BY MIDNIGHT ON THANKSGIVING DAY (11-28-13), and your donation will be DOUBLED!! *(Donations will be matched up to $3,000.)

Dear Fellow Age of Autism Readers,

After reading Dan Olmsted's Age of Autism anniversary article on Saturday, I felt moved to do something to make sure that this excellent daily blog continues…until the actual "age of autism" comes to an end and this tragic chapter in human history is finally put to rest.
To that end, I will match incoming donations to AoA through midnight on 11-28-13, up to the amount of $3,000. That means that Age of Autism could receive $6,000 in just a little over a week…hopefully more if everybody who is able makes a donation of thanksgiving and appreciation!
Your $20 becomes $40! Your $50 becomes $100! Your $250 becomes $500!  

All you need to do is click on the "Donate" button in the top-right corner of AoA, which takes you Donate_thanks directly to PayPal, and make your donation today!  If you prefer to send a check, send an email to for the mailing address.

Don't put it off until tomorrow.  Bite the bullet and do it now!  Let's shoot for the stars and raise more than $6,000, and keep AoA going strong!

A Thankful and Appreciative Age of Autism Reader

Boston Children's Holding Child "Hostage?"

Trapped childThis story is almost too crazy to be true.  Sick kids with true psychiatric illness and who need a hospital bed can't find one, and this young woman has been admitted for 9 months?  If you Google the girl's name, Justina Pelletier, there are no first page hits in mainstream American media except for FOX CT. Nothing from Boston at all.

The parents of a 15-year-old girl who has a long history of medical problems have lost custody of her to a hospital.

Justina Pelletier was diagnosed with mitochondrial disease, a genetic disorder that can cause loss of muscle coordination and weakness, several years ago.

The teenager from West Hartford, Connecticut, however was able to live a normal life until coming down with the flu in February.

Justina was admitted to Boston Children's Hospital to receive treatment from a specialist she has known since her diagnosis.

Upon admission however a team of new doctors allegedly swooped in on the teen and came up with a different conclusion about her condition.

They also cast doubt on whether she had ever had mitochondrial disease, suggesting she in fact suffering from Somafotorm disorder - a psychological condition that manifests itself in physical symptoms.

Read more:

“Lost in Public” Video Helps Parents Keep Their Children Safe

Lost childA newly-launched “Lost in Public” video, produced by the Autism Research Group, demonstrates how to use rules, role playing, and praise to teach children what to do if they get lost.

LOS ANGELES (Nov. 21, 2013) – The Autism Research Group (ARG)  this week launched “Lost in Public,” a five-minute video that instructs children and guardians how to use rules, role playing, and praise to teach children what to do if they become lost in a public setting.

ARG is a nonprofit organization dedicated to using science to help individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). “We study ways to improve the lives of children with autism. One way is by teaching them safety skills, such as what to do when they get lost. We also study the art of teaching – what works, what doesn’t,” says ARG Associate Scientist Ryan Bergstrom, M.A., BCBA.  

”Lost in Public” was filmed on the streets of Los Angeles with Bergstrom as the interviewer and instructor. Bergstrom asks random people what they would teach children to do if they got lost and how they would teach it. The unscripted responses are humorous anecdotes. However, Bergstrom says the video and its lesson are, by no means, a laughing matter.

Continue reading " “Lost in Public” Video Helps Parents Keep Their Children Safe" »

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Postponing VICP Hearing: Who Is Afraid and of What?

By Louis Conte

US Representative Darrell Issa, one of the most powerful men in the country, a man who can call cabinet secretaries in for hours of interrogation in front of the Oversight and Government Reform (OGR) Committee has been forced to table a hearing on the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (NVICP). What kind of pressure might have caused Issa to make this choice? We don’t know for sure, but there is one obvious candidate.


Working through their not-for profit pro-vaccine advocacy allies, pharma exerted enormous influence and likely created the pressure (either direct or indirect) that forced Congressman Issa to pull the plug. Every Child By Two and Voices for Vaccines, two organizations with strong drug industry ties, slammed all the buttons and, as usual, threatened to lay any “vaccine preventable deaths” at Congressman Issa’s doorstep. Pharma used fear because they were afraid. What is it that drug industry supporters are so afraid of?


What the NVICP really knows about autism is terrifying to people like Paul Offit, Dorit Reiss and Amy Pisani. These folks can spout the decisions of the Special Masters in the Omnibus Autism Proceedings (OAP) all they want. It won’t do anything to cover up the truth about what doctors like Geoffrey Evans and Vito Casserta in the Division of Vaccine Injury Compensation already knew years ago; sometimes vaccines tragically cause brain injury - an encephalopathy. A consequence of that injury, what the program calls a sequela, often includes the behavioral disorder known as autism.
The people in the NVICP know this to be true. A recent paper I co-authored, Unanswered Questions From the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program: A Review of Compensated Cases of Vaccine-Induced Brain Injury (Holland, Conte, Krakow, Colin, ), documented this clearly. While not getting access to the vast majority of the 1,300+ cases compensated for brain damage, we still found 83 cases where the vaccine injury included autism. This would have been very difficult to explain – or deny – under oath.  

Since publication of Unanswered Questions, more compensated cases have emerged (US Court of Claims, Case Number: 06-227V) and more families have stepped forward with the same pattern of vaccine injury – encephalopathy featuring autism. It would have been really awkward for those in the program to explain why twenty-five years of these kinds of cases had nothing to do with the rulings in the Omnibus Autism Proceedings. Rolf Hazelhurst’s statement at a recent Congressional Briefing about the curious behavior of government officials involved in the OAP must really have raised anxiety in the Office of the Special Masters and the Division of Vaccine Injury Compensation.

The sad truth is that all of the petitioners who filed claims that ended up being dismissed under the Omnibus Autism Proceedings were victims of the same injustice that was visited upon the OAP test case families. There are 5,000 OAP cases that may be like Michele Cedillo and Yates Hazelhurst. And there are thousands and thousands more who never had a chance to file in the NVICP. People denied justice because of a label, such as “autism”, are the victims of discrimination. And discrimination, even in the name of protecting public health policy, is still discrimination.
This is why Darrell Issa needed to drag people from the NVICP in front of a room full of mystified US Representatives and disgusted families.

Continue reading "Postponing VICP Hearing: Who Is Afraid and of What?" »

Theresa Cedillo Mother Of Vaccine Injured Daughter On Issa Delaying of VICP Hearing

MC courtMichelle Cedillo was our Child of the Year in 2007. Precious little has changed since that time for her or those who have followed in her footsteps. Read more HERE. Below is a letter to Chairman Issa from her Mother.

By Theresa Cedillo

It was with great disappointment that I learned of congressional hearings looking into the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program being delayed by Chairman Issa.  I am even more disappointed to say that this news does not come as a surprise.
The “others” are reluctant? That’s one of the reasons to delay? Why not subpoena them to appear? This hearing and a congressional investigation into the program, the Omnibus Autism Proceedings and the Department of Justice are long overdue.
As a parent of a severely vaccine injured child, who was the first test case in history in the Omnibus Autism Proceedings in 2007, I speak from personal experience.  Justice was not served in Michelle’s hearing in 2007.  She was used as a pawn in the ugly game of pretend that was orchestrated by the other side to shut down any further claims of vaccine injury and autism, belittle any experts who were willing to come forward on behalf of vaccine injured children and to further attack Dr. Andrew Wakefield and his research. It was a public show used to give an illusion of her “day in court”.  She was used to deny.
MC baby
Michelle is living proof of Dr. Wakefield’s theory of MMR/autism/chronic illness via vaccine injury.  Michelle regressed profoundly following administration of the MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) vaccination. She has tested positive for the vaccine strain measles virus RNA in her intestinal biopsies.  She has been diagnosed by pediatric specialists at top medical facilities on the West Coast with severe autism, severe static encephalopathy, a life threatening intractable seizure disorder, Crohn’s disease, stage III liver disease, arthritis, spondyloarthritis, gastro esophageal reflux disease, an oral aversion, osteopenia, bi-lateral foot deformities from arthritis, a 2 inch leg length discrepancy,  and she is legally blind. She has tested positive for mitochondrial dysfunction. She has a feeding tube. She does not talk. Michelle requires 24 hour care and assistance with all daily living skills. Her life has been ruined and irreversibly changed by her vaccinations.

MC sick

The same court that made a mockery of claims of autism following vaccination and denied the thousands of autism claims in the Omnibus, has awarded others outside of the Omnibus who have brain injury resulting in autism. The 1322 Project found 83 confirmed awards where the injured also has autism. Just recently, a child was awarded for brain injury (resulting in autism) following the MMR. Why should Michelle and the other claimants be punished for using the “A” word?  Does this come down to semantics?
MC Daddy

Discussions of filing complaints for fraud with the DOJ Office of Professional Responsibility have taken place amongst the lawyers and petitioners directly involved in the process.

MC bed Mom

Continue reading "Theresa Cedillo Mother Of Vaccine Injured Daughter On Issa Delaying of VICP Hearing" »

Autism Law Center on Issa Postponement of VICP Hearing: We Are Disappointed

EBCALA 2We are disappointed to announce the postponement of the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP) hearing scheduled for December 4, 2013.  EBCALA, along with several other like-minded advocacy organizations, worked diligently with Chairman Darrell Issa’s Oversight and Government Reform (OGR) Committee staff for nearly a year to make this critical hearing occur.

Chairman Issa remains committed to holding the VICP hearing and has asked for the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to conduct a thorough investigation and issue a report on the VICP. The GAO has not investigated the VICP since 1999.  He has also asked the Department of Health and Human Services to update its strategic plan for the VICP.

Chairman Issa stated at the Autism One Conference last May that it is critical to “crowd support” this issue.  EBCALA encourages you to take a few moments to express your support for the future VICP hearing. Please call OGR and your member of Congress to respectfully request that the VICP be thoroughly investigated and reschedule the VICP hearing as soon as possible.

Oversight and Government Reform Committee
Phone: (202) 225- 5074

Find Your Representative

EBCALA’s letter to OGR:

Dear Representative Issa:

I am writing to you with a heavy heart, having just learned that the hearing on the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP) has been postponed indefinitely from its tentative date of December 4, 2013. Staff members of the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform (OGR) let us know yesterday that you viewed the VICP subject matter as “overly divisive” and premature for hearings. We learned that you favored delay until a Government Accounting Office report and a Health and Human Services strategic plan could be updated.

Continue reading "Autism Law Center on Issa Postponement of VICP Hearing: We Are Disappointed" »

Grateful for Age of Autism? Join Matching Gift Program.


EXCITING OPPORTUNITY this Thanksgiving to show your thanks and appreciation for how the "Age of Autism" blog has helped, educated, and encouraged you and countless others! 
DONATE BY MIDNIGHT ON THANKSGIVING DAY (11-28-13), and your donation will be DOUBLED!! *(Donations will be matched up to $3,000.)

Dear Fellow Age of Autism Readers,

After reading Dan Olmsted's Age of Autism anniversary article on Saturday, I felt moved to do something to make sure that this excellent daily blog continues…until the actual "age of autism" comes to an end and this tragic chapter in human history is finally put to rest.
To that end, I will match incoming donations to AoA through midnight on 11-28-13, up to the amount of $3,000. That means that Age of Autism could receive $6,000 in just a little over a week…hopefully more if everybody who is able makes a donation of thanksgiving and appreciation!
Your $20 becomes $40! Your $50 becomes $100! Your $250 becomes $500!  

All you need to do is click on the "Donate" button in the top-right corner of AoA, which takes you Donate_thanks directly to PayPal, and make your donation today!  If you prefer to send a check, send an email to for the mailing address.

Don't put it off until tomorrow.  Bite the bullet and do it now!  Let's shoot for the stars and raise more than $6,000, and keep AoA going strong!

A Thankful and Appreciative Age of Autism Reader

OGR Chairman Issa "Delays" Hearings on Vaccine Injury Compensation Program. Affected Families Stunned.


Yesterday The Canary Party and her partners who have worked for a year on getting hearings on vaccine injury in Congress were informed that the hearing on the VICP that was set for December 4th has been postponed until next year.  We had a call this morning with the staff of the House Committee on Oversight and Government to get more clarity on their decision, and were informed that while the community of vaccine injured families is eager to testify, they were finding "reluctance" from others to participate in the hearings. 

Our response?  Of course they don't want to participate in these hearings!  Those both inside and outside of government who are involved in the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program and the monumental injustice that is being inflicted on untold thousands of vaccine injured children do not want to have to show up and explain what they have done under oath!

One thing is clear... Vaccine interests have been fighting this hearing in a way we have never seen before. 

Boiling down the message we received from OGR... they still want to work with us on things, and they might reschedule the hearings for next year.  Do they mean it or is it just a stall tactic?  We don't know.

We STRONGLY encourage you to take time today and call the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform and let them know how disappointed you are with their decision to pull the plug on hearings for our injured children a mere two weeks before the event.  Feel free to share with them your story.

Phone: (202) 225-5074

And call your Congressional representatives and tell them you want hearings on vaccine injury.

Chairman Darrell Issa
Oversight and Government Reform Committee
2157 Rayburn Building
Washington DC

Dear Chairman Issa,

Thank you for the opportunity to discuss recent developments with your staffers. On behalf of the many dedicated advocates who have been working so hard on the VICP hearing, we must express our great disappointment over your decision to defer hearings into the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (NVICP).

When you first raised the prospect of hearings with some of us last April, you raised the hopes of thousands of families who have experienced vaccine injury, many of whom have encountered mistreatment, abuse and outright fraud at the hands of the NVICP. As we discussed privately on numerous occasions, comprehensive hearings into the many faces of malfeasance within the VICP offer a unique opportunity to shine a light on how wildly the reality of the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act of 1986 has veered from the original intent of Congress. We believe the path forward you have chosen--delaying the hearing into 2014 in order to receive an update of the 1999 Government Accountability Office (GAO) report on the VICP as well as an update of the 2006 NVICP strategic plan from HHS—is well-intentioned. But for the community of vaccine injured families, it represents a retreat into more of the same and only delays a true investigation of the failures of the NVICP. These involve the neglect, abuse and suffering of thousands of American families, including painful injury, lifelong disability, economic devastation and death. Congress’1986 Act and its VICP are what enable these tragedies to continue every day. “Strategic plan updates” prepared by HHS officials will only give the NVICP the opportunity to stonewall, while the kind of GAO report that would really hold the NVICP accountable would take more than a year not just a few months. As we said to your staffers, we’re interested in providing input to the scope of a GAO project, but we’re pessimistic at what it can accomplish in the time available.

Continue reading "OGR Chairman Issa "Delays" Hearings on Vaccine Injury Compensation Program. Affected Families Stunned." »

IACC Testimony by Michelle Guppy Mother of Vaccine Injured Son

Michelle and son

Note: Below is testimony from last week's IACC meeting in Washington, DC. It takes tremendous effort for autism Moms and Dads to travel to make our children's plight known and voices heard.  Bookmark Michelle's blog, This is Autism. Thank you, Michelle.

By Michelle Guppy

My son Brandon is 19 years old.  He was born perfectly healthy and is now severely affected by regressive autism from vaccine injury.  He cannot read, write, or speak.  He needs assistance with the most basic of life skills.  He must have constant supervision because he has no sense of danger and will wander off given the slightest of opportunities.  He has bowel disease, auto-immune disorder, allergies, & the list goes on.  He suffers from uncontrolled seizures that cause him great harm. I am unable to work outside the home because it takes all my time to research how to help him, advocate for him, and care for him.  At times he endures such pain.  The frustration of not being able to communicate what hurts, - causing him to bite his own hands to the point of bleeding.  

My autism advocacy journey began right here in Washington 13 years ago.  In all those years I Michelle Guppy DChave not seen any real strategy or actions to address the crisis that is the epidemic of autism.  I have only seen the number of those affected increase.  Any help I have received has been from other parents, or from doctors who themselves have a child with autism, or if not, who have actually listened to parents and dedicated their lives to truly helping them.  I live 30 minutes from a major medical center, yet they have given me little to no usable help.  When I meet with those doctors, it is I who educate them.  It was years before I found medical help 2 hours away for my son to be scoped in evaluation of and treatment for his GI Issues.  I believe my son would be dead had I not found a doctor 16 hours away who I now consult with for treatment of issues traditional doctors would never acknowledge.

There is something wrong with a system where  insurance covers doctors who do not help, but not a dime for the few who actually do help.

There is something wrong with a prescription program that covers Pharma's drugs that do not help, but not those vitamins, supplements, and herbs prescribed by my doctor that very much have helped heal my son.   

There is something wrong with funding studies that  produce the same conclusions yet take no action to address them. I can summarize them all with this:  My "Life with Autism" is harder than anyone could ever fathom.  My marriage does suffer. My typical son does get ignored. I am stressed beyond oblivion.  I am bone tired and I am desperate for respite.  My son needs recreational programs appropriate for him.  I want him to live in our home, be a part of his community.  He needs services and supports that I cannot afford, - given everything else like a lifetime of care for him that I must somehow provide for.  

There is something very wrong with funding study after useless study about what might cause autism; except for the one study that CAN prove a major cause of autism.

We need medical centers that partner with researchers and holistic practitioners -- for a whole body approach to treating autism.  "Autism is Medical" did a survey where  89% replied that they sought healthcare through alternative practitioners or managed their own child's health problems, because they could NOT get adequate healthcare for their child in mainstream medicine.  85% replied that mainstream physicians are NOT familiar with the health problems their child has.  71% feel their child's medical needs are IGNORED and are told that their autism is psychological and therefore their symptoms do NOT need to be investigated.  87% feel their child has less access to appropriate healthcare across all settings than a child without an autism diagnosis.

Action must begin with those sobering percentages.

To even begin to address the needs of the adult population is something that should have been started a decade ago.  There's an entire generation like my son who will "age out" and have nowhere to go that their parents can afford -- for them to continue to learn, work, or further develop life skills.

Continue reading "IACC Testimony by Michelle Guppy Mother of Vaccine Injured Son" »

Anonymous Donor to Match Your Gift to Age of Autism

EXCITING OPPORTUNITY this Thanksgiving to show your thanks and appreciation for how the "Age of Autism" blog has helped, educated, and encouraged you and countless others! 
DONATE BY MIDNIGHT ON THANKSGIVING DAY (11-28-13), and your donation will be DOUBLED!! *(Donations will be matched up to $3,000.)

Dear Fellow Age of Autism Readers,

After reading Dan Olmsted's Age of Autism anniversary article on Saturday, I felt moved to do something to make sure that this excellent daily blog continues…until the actual "age of autism" comes to an end and this tragic chapter in human history is finally put to rest.
To that end, I will match incoming donations to AoA through midnight on 11-28-13, up to the amount of $3,000. That means that Age of Autism could receive $6,000 in just a little over a week…hopefully more if everybody who is able makes a donation of thanksgiving and appreciation!
Your $20 becomes $40! Your $50 becomes $100! Your $250 becomes $500!  

All you need to do is click on the "Donate" button in the top-right corner of AoA, which takes you Donate_thanks directly to PayPal, and make your donation today!  If you prefer to send a check, send an email to for the mailing address.

Don't put it off until tomorrow.  Bite the bullet and do it now!  Let's shoot for the stars and raise more than $6,000, and keep AoA going strong!

A Thankful and Appreciative Age of Autism Reader

Win an iPad and Help Autism Research from ARI

ARI logo FebHelp Research That Makes a Difference: Complete Updated ARI E-2 Survey to Identify Autism Subtypes by Nov. 30 

Who: Chief Investigator Steve M. Edelson, Ph.D., Executive Director, Autism Research Institute.

What: Comprehensive, consent-based online survey. The survey is lengthy and may take up to two hours to complete - you can start the survey and then save it, and return and complete it another time. The survey is online at:  

Purpose: (1) To corroborate previous research on subtyping autism and (2) to determine, based on parent responses, possible underlying causes and the effectiveness of various interventions in relation to each subtype.

Compensation: Participants who complete the entire survey will receive a complimentary one-year subscription to ARI's science newsletter, the Autism Research Review International.  

Complete the survey this month for a chance to win

In addition, participants will be entered in a contest to win an Apple iPad. Must complete the form by 10 p.m., PST Nov. 30th. Note: one entry per individual with ASD. Drawing is Dec. 1, 2013.

Where: International - this study is open to participants worldwide.  

When: Starts November 1, 2013 - data collection is ongoing, but the iPad drawing will take place on December 1st, 2013. The winner of the drawing will not be announced publicly.

Take the survey here.

National Autism Association in NYT on Wandering, Avonte Oquendo

Avonte New FlyerManaging Editor's Note: Thank you to Lori McIlwain and all of our friends at National Autism Association for this urgent message to the American public about wandering, autism and tragedy.

By Lori McIlwain

The Day My Son Went Missing Wandering Is a Major Concern for Parents of Children With Autism

NOW in its sixth week, the search for Avonte Oquendo, a 14-year-old boy from Queens with autism, is shining a light on the issue of wandering among people with autism. On Oct. 4, Avonte managed to slip away after lunch from his school in Long Island City — even though he was known to wander during classroom transitions.

While most people associate wandering with elderly sufferers from Alzheimer’s or other types of dementia, a recent study published in the journal Pediatrics found that 49 percent of children with autism were prone to the behavior. Given the prevalence of autism — at one in 88 children, or one in 50 school-age children — it’s clear this is an everyday concern for many thousands of parents.

The day Avonte went missing, a Friday, a 12-year-old boy with autism was in a medically induced coma in Oakland, Calif. According to reports, he had wandered from his mother in a parking lot and entered eastbound traffic on I-580, where he was struck by at least one vehicle. By Sunday, another child with autism had gone missing: 5-year-old Devonte Dye wandered from his grandparents’ home in southeast Missouri. Tragically, he was found the next day, drowned, in a slough near the St. Francis River.

Since 2011, 41 American children with autism have died after wandering, or “bolting,” from caregivers. Water is often a fatal draw for these children. Since April of this year, 14 out of 16 deaths were from drowning.

Even as a campaigner, I did not appreciate the full magnitude of the issue until my own child went missing in 2007. Connor was 7 years old when he left his schoolyard, unnoticed, through an unlocked gate and made his way toward a four-lane highway.

Many children with autism have particular fascinations, and Connor’s is with highway exit signs. For our family, driving up and down the interstate was a fun day out. We never suspected he’d attempt to get there on foot.

Luckily, a passing driver noticed our son; the driver turned around, just in case. When Connor failed to answer a few basic questions, he was taken to another nearby school. That school called the police. The police had no idea how to deal with Connor: An officer mistook our mostly nonverbal child for a defiant rule-breaker who needed some “tough love.”

Finally, a staff member at the school reached me, but exactly how long Connor had been missing by the time I got to him, no one could tell me. Connor was hysterical, shaking. I scooped him up in a hug, whispering through my own tears, “You’re O.K.”

That was our big wake-up call, but it didn’t end there. Connor’s wandering had started in day care and continued through school. He slipped out during classroom transitions, as Avonte did. We found ourselves keeping Connor home on days we feared it might be easier for him to slip away. Here I was, an advocate for others, yet I could not keep my own child safe.

Continue reading "National Autism Association in NYT on Wandering, Avonte Oquendo" »

Announcing Fearless Parent Radio 11/13 11am ET


Co-hosts Louise Kuo Habakus and Alison MacNeil are parents and published authors. Habakus was a Bain consultant and a C-level executive. MacNeil has been a psychotherapist for 20 years.
Gutsy parent’s NPR,” the new weekly show Fearless Parent Radio delivers fresh social media perspective on parenting and wellness.
Show topics include a book in praise of admitting ignorance, boys and our failing schools, going pediatrician-free, and sex and parenting. Monthly segment “Fearless Medicine” hosted by mom and holistic psychiatrist Kelly Brogan, MD.

NYC, airing on and available on iTunes
November 13 at 11 a.m. ET and live every Wednesday
Social media is exploding with extraordinary conversations about parenting on the front lines today. Refusing to be manipulated by fear, parents are reading the science, sharing knowledge, and building powerful networked communities.
“Alison and I will be holding a microphone up to the exceptional conversations taking place on social media and in our social circles. These are the stories, more real than Reality TV, that tell about parenting today,” said Fearless Parent co-founder, Louise Kuo Habakus. “Over-focusing on things that have currency in the world, like money and titles, interferes with our ability to parent effectively. We’d all do better to “Lean In” a bit more to our parenting.”

About Fearless Parent: Fearless Parent is an innovative online media platform covering the new parenting espoused by today’s thinking parent. The site offers news, commentary, and original content on the pulse of social media, through our blogs, radio show, and community-based programming. The reporting is provocative, honest, and hopeful. Our audience is the savvy and resourceful parent who is willing to question authority and make decisions based on both instinct and research.

Thank You Sephora for Pulling Kat Von D Lipstick with Offensive Name

SephoracroppedUpdate: Lipstickgate is now on - please feel free to comment over there. As you can imagine, not everyone understands the problem with the lipstick name. Thanks. KS

Update: And Perez Hilton.

By Kim Stagliano

I want to publicly thank the people at Sephora for acting quickly and pulling a Kat Von D. lipstick whose name was offensive to many of us. 

Kat Von D. is an LA personality known for her extensive tattooing.  You can read her bio here. I can not read her bio there. I am 49 and the font is about size 2 on her site. The lipstick name was Celebutard, which is a real word and is a hybrid of celebrity and retard. Of course the retard part is intended to imply stupid, impaired, disabled.  It's a slur.  It's cousin is Debutard, sometimes used to describe/insult trust fund babies like Paris Hilton. 

I wrote a Huffington Post piece "Are You High on Tattoo Ink?" that caught some attention while expressing my dismay that Sephora hadn't realized how ugly this name was for a beauty product. Other people also wrote about the poorly named lipstick. 

Check out this Tweet exchange from Kat Von D. in which she missed the point of the critique.  The woman she was Tweeting with (I blocked her name for privacy)  and I had a nice exchange today - she realized why many advocates were offended and changed her mind. That's cool. We can all learn and grow. And I hope Miss Von D. also learns and grows from the experience.

Words hurt as much as tattoo needles. And the effects can be as permanent.

Kat Tweet

Sephora pulled the product from their shelves.   They reacted swiftly and, I think, appropriately.

My kids watch Christmas movies year round. One of their favorites is Santa Claus is Comin' To Town. I love the scene when Kris Kringle asks for help from the Winter Warlock, who is supposed to be the meanest, coldest dude in the forest. The Warlock tries to help Kris get the toys to the kids - but fears he has limited powers. After all, he only has a candle stick stub and a few pieces of magic corn.  But that corn makes reindeer fly (and that leads us to Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, which we also watch 12 months a year.)

I'm proud that I was able use my few pieces of magic corn, my really limited powers, to do something positive for a whole lot of people.

House of Cards 200 pixelsKim Stagliano is Managing Editor of Age of Autism. Her novel,  House of Cards; A All I Can Handle 50 pixel Kat Cavicchio romantic suspense is available from Amazon in all e-formats now. Her memoir, All I Can Handle I'm No Mother Teresa is available in hardcover, paperback and e-book.


Autism Research Institute Survey To Identify Autism Subtypes

ARI sidebar logoFriends, we invite you to participate in this survey from ARI:

Parents & Caregivers Urged to Complete Updated ARI E-2 Survey to Identify Autism Subtypes  
Who: Chief Investigator Steve M. Edelson, Ph.D., Executive Director, Autism Research Institute.
What: Comprehensive, consent-based online survey. The survey is lengthy and may take up to two hours to complete - you can start the survey and then save it, and return and complete it another time. The survey is online
Purpose: (1) To corroborate previous research on subtyping autism and (2) to determine, based on parent responses, possible underlying causes and the effectiveness of various interventions in relation to each subtype.

Compensation: Participants who complete the entire survey will receive a complimentary one-year subscription to ARI's science newsletter, the Autism Research Review International.

In addition, participants will be entered in a contest to win an Apple iPad. Note: one entry per individual with ASD. Drawing is Dec. 1, 2013.

Where: International - this study is open to participants worldwide.
When: Starts November 1, 2013 - data collection is ongoing, but the iPad raffle will take place on December 1st, 2013. The winner of the drawing will not be announced publicly.

Find Avonte Oquendo: Autism, Missing Since 10/4 Queens NY

Avonte 95

On this Halloween, there is a family in New York hoping for a treat - 14 year old Avonte Oquendo eloped from his school in Queens., NY on Friday October 4. There has been no trace of him since, despite weeks of searching and a $95,000 reward.

Wandering is a huge problem, a life threatening issue in our community.  Toddlers to teens and as the population ages, we'll hear of 20 somethings wandering.

If you want to help - this is from the Find Avonte team. The photo on this post is the flyer. Right click it to download and save. Also, there is a petition to start an AVONTE ALERT for autism in New York - view it HERE.

MISSING Flyers are a continued need at the search site! If you are willing and able to donate flyers, please mail to Jennifer Prevete, 402 Graham Ave. #147, Brooklyn, NY, 11211 or drop off at the command post at 1-50 51st Avenue, Queens.

Flyers in the English, Spanish, Mandarin, Cantonese and Bangladesh languages are needed most. They may be downloaded and printed from the photos section above. Thank you!

Wed, October 30, 2013. Avonte Oquendo is still missing! He is 14 years old and has the mind of a young child. He is autistic and mute. He needs your help to get back home. Please get out and search. He was last seen wearing dark blue almost black jeans, black Jordan sneakers and a grey striped shirt. He is afraid of strangers and likes to hide. If you see him, do not approach him, call 911 IMMEDIATELY and follow him at a distance. Do not let him out of your sight. Thank you for your help and your vigilance in searching, it is greatly appreciated! Spread the word. Tomorrow is Halloween, there will be millions on the streets, let's Bring Avonte Home!!!!

The Bullying of Autism Recovery

Fisher Price BullyBy Zack Peter

Recently the Huffington Post’s Linda Matroianni wrote about autism recovery being just a “bandwagon.” She said there is no such thing as recovery and all this bandwagon is doing is providing people with “false hope.”

I’ll say it time and time again. There is no such thing as “false” hope. Either you have hope or you don’t. There’s no faking hope. Therefore, if you have hope, there can be nothing false about it.

In terms of there being no such proof of autism recovery? I’ll be the first to raise my hand and call that bullshit. I’ll be honest, my brother isn’t fully recovered at this point in time. But that has nothing to do with whether biomed treatment works or doesn’t work. There are other influences that are unfortunately overshadowing his recovery at the moment. But that doesn’t mean I don’t still hold my hope alive.

Again, I’m not going to lie, recovering a child with autism is HARD AS HELL. It’s extremely difficult. But hey, no place worth going comes without a struggle.

Continue reading "The Bullying of Autism Recovery" »

IACC Question 1 Planning Group (Diagnosis and Screening)

Webcast2Reminder: Upcoming Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee-Related Meetings
Please join us for the following upcoming IACC-related  conference calls and workshop.
On Tuesday, October 29, 2013 - the IACC Question 1 Planning Group (Diagnosis and Screening) will be having a conference call from 1:30p.m. – 3:30p.m. (this was rescheduled from the previous date of October 4, 2013)
Conference Call Access
USA/Canada Phone Number: 888-730-9135
Public Access code: 8183922 (Listen-only)
On Wednesday, October 30, 2013 - the IACC Question 3 Planning Group (Risk Factors) will be having a conference call from 2:00p.m. – 4:00p.m. (this was rescheduled from the previous date of October 8, 2013)
Conference Call Access
USA/Canada Phone Number: 888-790-3086
Public Access code: 4051939 (Listen-only)

Continue reading "IACC Question 1 Planning Group (Diagnosis and Screening)" »

Concerns: UN Convention on Rights of Persons With Disabilities

Your_rightsBy Karol Osborne, MD

I am writing to you because I have long respected the work and writings you have done for the Age of Autism website.

I wanted to make you aware of another push coming to ratify the U.N. Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD).  (The last such push, in December 2012, was voted down).  Word is out that the Senate Foreign Relations Committee will hold two hearings on the CRPD, one on October 29 and one on October 31. It appears that the supporters of the treaty will try to push it through very quickly, and likely try to send it to the floor before the end of the year.

This document is concerning on many fronts, but I believe it should be particularly concerning to any parent of a vaccine injured child, or really to  anyone concerned about the skyrocketing incidence of autism (as well as a plethora of other serious chronic diseases) in our youth, and a potential link to vaccinations.  The fundamental concern with this document is its adoption of the "best interests of the child" standard.  With this change in language, courts and government agencies (rather than parents) would be given the authority to decide what is best for children with disabilities.  This would come into play with choices about future vaccinations for autistic (and all disabled) children, decisions about medical treatments for autistic (and all disabled) children and school/educational choices.

The CRPD is just the first arm of the "1-2 punch" that is being planned.  The second arm will then be ratification of the U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC).  Once the language is changed to the "best interests of the child" in the CRPD, this will grease the way to ratify the UN CRC, which, of course, is grounded in the same fundamental shift in language and approach to all of the children in the U.S., not just the disabled.   Political leaders are leading with the CRPD, I believe, because they feel it stands a better chance at ratification, because parents of the disabled (busy caring for their disabled children) will not have the time to stand up against these plans.

Continue reading "Concerns: UN Convention on Rights of Persons With Disabilities" »

Autism and Vaccine Rights Groups Unified in Opposition to New York City Mayor’s Vaccine Dictates

Call nowBy John Gilmore Your_rights
At a public comment session held yesterday by the New York City Board of Health, autism organizations spoke in opposition to Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s proposal to require children age 3 to 6 years old to get annual flu shots and a pneumococcus shot to attend preschool or daycare.
The autism advocacy community is sometimes criticized for failing to work together achieve common goals, but yesterday representatives and supporters of the Autism Action Network, the Canary Party, the Elizabeth Birt Center for Autism Law and Advocacy, My Kids, My Choice, the National Autism Association, New York Metro Chapter, the National Vaccine Information Center, SAFEMINDS and There is Hope, along with a score more of citizens spoke in opposition to the proposal. Not a single speaker spoke in support.
In the waning days of this third and last term as mayor of New York, Michael Bloomberg is attempting to create for the first time a New York city-only mandatory vaccine regime.  As America’s leading proponent of the “nanny state,” this is the last of Bloomberg’s many well-publicized efforts to make New Yorkers behave the way he wants them to. He required calorie counts on menus, banned various cooking oils in restaurants, and notably failed to limit the size of soft drinks. A $100 million contribution to his alma mater, Johns Hopkins University, resulted in the renaming of their school of public health after Bloomberg.
The members of the Board of Health are all appointed by the Mayor and will rubber stamp anything he proposes. The meeting to vote on the proposal will be held sometime in December, but by that time New York will have elected a new mayor and Bloomberg will have just days left in office.
Advocates are asking New Yorkers opposed to Bloomberg’s unprecedented imposition of the city into families healthcare decisions, to call the offices of the two candidates from the major parties running for mayor and ask them to oppose Bloomberg’s proposal.
Front-runner Bill Deblasio’s campaign can be reached at:  347-746-2455
And please call GOP candidate Joe Lhota’s campaign at:  646-678-4792
And please keep calling until we get a statement from both candidates.