Home > Government Relations > What’s All the “Brewer-Ha-Ha” about Arizona?

What’s All the “Brewer-Ha-Ha” about Arizona?

It’s on the other side of a country three time zones away from you.  You have never been there. You don’t know anyone who lives there.  You have enough on your plate with your own family and your child’s needs.

Why should you care about what is happening in the state of Arizona?

Arizona became the fourth state to enact autism insurance reform legislation in the spring of 2008. In 2011, their legislature became the first state to pass a bill that would effectively reverse the progress made three years ago. That legislation now sits on Governor Brewer’s desk awaiting its fate – to become law or to get her veto stamp.

On its face, this new legislation appears harmless and expansive of our free enterprise, capitalist society.  Let the interstate commerce trading of insurance policies begin under the premise of increased competition in the market to allow for reduced health care costs!  But at what price?  If SB 1593 is signed into law by Governor Jan Brewer, it will allow companies to shop outside the great state of Arizona – perhaps in states where autism insurance reform has not passed – potentially leaving families alone holding the bag once again for their exorbitant children’s health care costs which can quickly and easily be upwards of $75,000 each year.

Just watch the evening news any given week and you can see that Arizona politics these days are writhe with state’s rights and state pride.  “Don’t tell us what to do. We are Arizona.”  That said, how is it possible that Arizona legislators would then choose to hand over regulatory authority of healthcare coverage for their constituency to say…Rhode Island?  If SB 1593 is signed into law, policies will be purchased across state lines, or even across the country. Citizens will have no recourse – subject to the whims of the other state’s legislature, regulation committees and judicial system.  They will have no representation at all.

Last week, Autism Speaks launched an aggressive campaign asking Governor Brewer to veto the bill.  Members of our Government Relations team met with her office.  We purchased television air time for commercials. We sent eblasts to rally the Arizona community.

This week we are asking people all across America to pitch in with the heavy lifting.  We need it. 

There is a company generating robocalls to call for Governor Brewer’s signature into law.  And their ever efficient robodialer is delivering calls to Governor Brewer’s office at a higher rate than our community – a community exhausted from fighting our fight at every turn.

Help us prove that our grassroots advocates are better than robots.

This is simply a domino that we cannot afford to let fall.  A victory for the opposition would bolster  resolve to introduce similar legislation in every state where reform initiatives have passed.

Who cares about Arizona politics? You should. Your insurance coverage, or your hope of obtaining it, is now in great jeopardy. As a community we must stand strong. We must come to Arizona’s aid.  We must politely ask Governor Brewer to do the right thing – to veto SB 1593 and preserve the accomplishments of Steven’s Law.

Regardless of what state you live in, please call Governor Brewer’s office at 602.542.4331. Press #4 for a live person. Say “I am calling to ask Governor Brewer to veto SB 1593.” Tell your friends. Post it on your Facebook. Send it out through Twitter.  Ask for accountability from your friends and family. Ask them to demonstrate publically that they have completed the mission by writing “DONE” below your post.

Nothing in life is ever easy. To preserve progress, we must be ever vigilant.

To learn more about what is happening in Arizona or to learn how you can become more involved in federal and state initiatives, please visit www.autismvotes.org and sign up today!

  1. April 28, 2011 at 11:27 am


    • Shelley Hendrix
      April 28, 2011 at 11:37 am

      Thank you Rene! Spread the word! Let’s get this done in Arizona!

  2. Tara
    April 28, 2011 at 11:37 am

    I live in AZ have a daughter with autsium I have wrote to Brewer and have called

  3. Heather Beckham
    April 28, 2011 at 11:42 am


  4. April 28, 2011 at 11:43 am

    DONE: Called, Posted on FB, Tweeted!!!

  5. Mary Ann Schaefer
    April 28, 2011 at 11:45 am


  6. Shelley Hendrix
    April 28, 2011 at 12:01 pm

    Thank you ladies. We just can’t afford to fail here. WAY TOO IMPORTANT and everyone in AZ fought way to hard…as well as all of the other states. Thank you for taking action. I challenge you to get 10 of your friends minimum to do the same!

  7. JOsef P MElech
    April 28, 2011 at 12:09 pm

    I live in New Mexico, one of those states where i alone cover the costs for mine and my sons’ asperger’s syndrome. I’ve called arizona and am actively campaigning in monkey see monkey do land.

  8. Shelley Hendrix
    April 28, 2011 at 12:21 pm

    Thank you Josef. Did you realize New Mexico has passed similar legislation that does provide coverage for children with autism whose parents have state regulated policies? Go visit the http://www.autismvotes.org page and then go to the New Mexico page to learn more!

  9. zoobadger
    April 28, 2011 at 12:28 pm

    State’s rights are all well and good, but so often “State’s Rights” is invoked in circumstances where the ultimate effect is to trample on individual rights. For example, in the instance of a little dustup that started 150 years ago at Ft. Sumpter, SC.

  10. RaeAnn
    April 28, 2011 at 2:49 pm

    I posted on fb

  11. Geneva A.
    April 28, 2011 at 3:48 pm


  12. Allison
    April 28, 2011 at 5:16 pm

    DONE!!! :)

  13. Maddie-chan
    April 28, 2011 at 5:16 pm

    Vote people, vote!!! ….mostly all my facebook friends are not old enough to vote. I also don’t know anyone in Arizona.
    But I’ll do anything else there is for a 17 year old to do here!!!!!! *I gotta take some control of my own future here, right?* If you guys need any help promoting, I’ll find a way to get that done. :D

  14. Steven Winner
    April 28, 2011 at 5:43 pm

    I don’t get this…if you want to sell health insurance in the state of Arizona, you must cover autism care, regardless of where your health insurance company is based out of. This sounds like a lot of fuss over nothing!

  15. Robynn Davis
    April 28, 2011 at 7:29 pm

    I tried to call and got a recording that said, “I’m sorry, your call cannot be completed as dialed, please check the listing and try again.” =(

  16. Shelly Valladolid
    April 28, 2011 at 7:34 pm

    That’s almost as bad as taking money meant to help people with autism and using it for personal salaries, promoting ignorance and eugenics, and treating people with autism as if they were a tragic burden instead of a human being with feelings and capabilites. Oh, wait, that’s Autism Speaks.

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