Parents of children with autism compare it to falling off a cliff. "The picture is nothingness," says one mom profiled in the hour-long segment. Yes, primetime TV has finally touched the tip of the enormous iceberg that is our massive autism epidemic, and our failure to respond in any meaningful way to the intensive lifespan needs of these young disabled people. In California we know we have 76,000 cases of severe autism, only about 14,000 of which are currently over the age of 21. Every year, about 2,000 more age out of school.
How will we care for this mass population of citizens incapable of caring for themselves, and who need 24/7 care? We don't know. We have no plan. In fact, in Sacramento and Washington we don't even talk about it. HUD won't even provide housing vouchers. Medicare won't even fund the aides. Our state system is already bursting at the seams, and clearly incapable of support for even the existing adult population. 94% of California's autism population still lives home with parents or family—eventually, by necessity as we age, they will all move out. But to where? With whom? We don't know.
Watch the segment: